Ireland’s Katie Taylor Debuts on Saturday

Ireland’s Katie Taylor Debuts on Saturday in England


Ireland’s highly acclaimed Katie Taylor, a former Olympic gold medalist in 2012, jumps into the prize ring for her much anticipated pro debut on Saturday in London, England, the site of her greatest accomplishment.

Now 30 years old, the multi-world champion of the amateur world enters a new fold in her career in a sport with no mercy. Can she duplicate the debut of American two-time Olympic gold medalist Claressa Shields?

Taylor meets Poland’s Karina Kopinska (7-14-3) in a six round bout on Saturday Nov. 26, at Wembley Arena. It will be her first time fighting in the boxing ring with no head gear and smaller gloves. No more 16 ounce pillows.

Last Saturday, in Las Vegas, America’s potential female star Shields engaged in her first exchange of blows without head gear and smaller gloves. It was a memorable experience and against a much more talented fighter than Taylor will be facing.

“It was really different getting hit without the head gear on,” said Shields after her pro debut at T-Mobile Arena against Franchon Crews, who won 10 US National titles as an amateur. “The gloves are smaller.”

Those smaller gloves can mean the difference between a decision and a knockout. Though Shields was unable to knock out Crews, it wasn’t from lack of trying as both unleashed some killer combinations that did land. Several times it looked like Crews was going down but she was very resilient and cool as a cucumber under a flaming attack by Shields.

“Even though I have never knocked anyone out as a pro, I know that I can,” said Shields a day after the fight against Crews. “I came so close.”

Taylor has won numerous world championships as an amateur but the difference between amateur and pros is immense. In the amateur world winning on points is the object of the sport. Many amateur boxers have a more slapping and flicking style of punching. In the pros, fighters are taught to hurt and disable a foe, not merely out-point the opponent.

Entertaining the fans is the key in the pro boxing world. Knockout fighters are more appreciated than stylistic boxers who win on points. It’s a marked distinction that usually leads to the downfall of amateur champions transitioning into the pros.

Can Taylor be the exception?

The talented Irish boxer has extensive experience against competition from around the world. She’s fought polished fighters from almost every continent in the world and emerged victorious until just recently when she lost in the world championships last May. Then, in the Rio Olympics, she lost again in the quarter finals. Perhaps those defeats were wake up calls that professional boxing is more suited for her talent.

Taylor will be fighting Kopinska who has plenty of experiences in 10-round bouts. Taylor has only fought in four round amateur bouts. Those extra rounds can seem like a marathon to the newcomers. Kopinska has only been knocked out once in her 24 bouts. In many ways this is the perfect test for Ireland’s finest female boxer in history.



Other Female Fight News



Erica Farias (24-1) retained the WBC super lightweight title by unanimous decision over Marisa Nunez (7-7-2) after 10 rounds. The fight took place on Saturday Nov. 19, in San Fernando, Argentina. Also, Andrea Sanchez (5-0-1) defeated Jazmin Vilarino (0-1) by majority decision after a four-round flyweight bout.

Cintia Castillo (4-0) defeated Valeria Almiron (1-10) by decision in a six-round super bantamweight bout on Friday Nov. 18, in Juarez Celman, Argentina.

On Saturday Nov. 26, in Buenos Aires, a super bantamweight showdown for the vacant WBO title between Sabrina Perez (14-0-1) and Alondra Garcia (16-2-1) takes place. The fight is set for 10 rounds. Garcia, 21, hails from Guadalajara, Mexico. Perez, 30, lives and trains in Isidro Casanova, Argentina.

On Saturday Nov. 26, in Junin, a battle for the vacant Argentine flyweight title takes place between Anahi Lopez (7-0-1) and Luna Torroba (10-4-2). The title fight is set for 10 rounds. Also, Debora Gomez (1-1) fights Maria Cano (0-0) in another flyweight bout.


Czech Republic

Fabiana Bytyqi (9-0) kept the WBC Youth minimumweight title by unanimous decision after 10 rounds against Halima Vunjabei (3-3-1) on Saturday Nov. 19, in Karlovy Vary. Also, Lucie Sedlackova (8-0-1) captured the vacant WBC Youth featherweight title by unanimous decision after 10 rounds versus Pasa Malagic (11-4).



Elodie Bouchlaka (2-1-2) defeated Mirela Barudzic (1-7) by decision after six rounds in a super bantamweight contest on Saturday Nov. 19, in Canohes, France.

On Saturday Nov. 26, in Saint Dizier, light flyweights Anne Da Costa (21-2) and Fatuma Yazidu (11-2) fight a 10 round clash for the WBF light flyweight title.



Beke Bas (7-0) captured the vacant GBA lightweight title by split decision after 10 rounds versus Aida Halac (7-2) on Saturday Nov. 19, in Bayern, Germany. Also, Leonie Giebel (10-0-1) beat Bojana Libiszewska (2-19) by decision after eight super featherweight rounds.

Christina Linardatou (9-1) defeated Andreja Bester (0-2) by decision after a six round lightweight contest on Saturday Nov. 19, in Duisburg, Germany.

On Friday Nov. 25, in Nierdersachsen, lightweights Joanna Koelln (3-0) and Kristina Jeftenic (0-5) engage in a six round bout.

On Saturday Nov. 26, in Moabit, super welterweights Jennifer Retzke (15-3-1) and Elene Sikmashvili (9-3) are set for a 10-round battle. Super lightweights Verena Kaiser (6-0) and Lela Terashvili (8-5-1) battle in another 10-round battle. Welterweights Johanna Kruse (0-0) and Susann Sawionski (0-0) battle each other.



Melissa St. Vil  (9-2-3) the WBC Silver super featherweight titlist defeated Diana Garcia (14-23) by unanimous decision in a non-title fight on Wednesday Nov. 16. The fight was a charity event to help the hurricane victims in Haiti. St. Vil is Haitian descent living in Brooklyn, New York.



On Sunday Nov. 27, in Kagoshima, a bantamweight fight between Miyo Yashida (4-1) and Kana Fukuda (3-1-1) is set for six rounds.



Alejandra Nuricumbo (1-0) won her pro debut by technical knockout over Elizabeth Perez (2-1) in the fifth round of their flyweight clash on Saturday Nov. 19, in Chiapas, Mexico. The end came at 2:43 of the fifth. The rounds were three-minute rounds instead of two-minute rounds.

On Saturday Nov. 26, in Torreon, current WBC light flyweight titlist Ibeth Zamora (26-5) meets Nina Stojanovic (9-0) in the WBC flyweight tournament. Zamora, 27, who fights out of Mexico City, will not be defending her title. Stojanovic, 24, fights out of Serbia.

On Saturday Nov. 26, in Tlaquepaque, featherweights Yareli Larios (9-0) and Estefania Franco (0-3) clash in a 10-round bout.



On Friday Nov. 25, in Moscow, super welterweights Inna Sagaydakovskaya (2-0) and Yuliya Smyzhina (0-0) engage in a six round contest.

On Saturday Nov. 26, in Pyatigorsk, super lightweights Marina Popova (2-1) and Suzana Radovanovic (1-26) meet in a six round bout.



Milena Svonja (3-2) defeated Jovana Ignjatovic (0-1) by decision after a four-round super lightweight contest on Saturday Nov. 19, in Becej, Serbia.


South Korea

On Saturday Nov. 26, in Icheon City, a flyweight battle between Eun Hye Lee (8-1) and Nongnun Mor Krungthepthonburi (5-3-1) takes place for the vacant WIBA title.



On Saturday Nov. 26, in Valencia, super flyweights Eva Naranjo (6-0) and Mary Romero (2-2) meet in a six round bout. Also, super featherweights Katharina Thanderz (2-0) and Azahara Sanchez (0-0) meet in a four round contest.



Valgedur Gudstensdottir (1-0) won her pro debut by decision over Angelique Hernandez (1-2) after a four round featherweight bout on Saturday Nov. 19, in Haninge, Sweden.



Pamela Treand (5-0) beat Claudia Ferenczi (13-54-6) by decision after a six-round super bantamweight fight that took place on Friday Nov. 18, in Carouge, Switzerland.


United Kingdom

On Saturday Nov. 26, in Wembley, a lightweight contest features Ireland’s Katie Taylor (0-0) making her pro debut against Karina Kopinska (7-14-3) in a six round bout. Taylor is one of the most decorated female boxers in amateur history and won a gold medal on the 2012 London Olympics.



Claressa Shields (1-0) defeated Franchon Crews (0-1) by unanimous decision after a four round super middleweight fight on Saturday Nov. 19, in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was the pro debut for both who are former amateur stars. Shields, 21, is a two-time Olympic gold medalist. Crews, 29, is a 10-time former US Nationals champion.

Britain Hart (2-0) defeated Khadija Sanders (0-2) by knockout in the first round of their featherweight bout on Saturday Nov. 19, in Danville, Virginia.

Natalie Gonzalez (3-0) knocked out Marina Ramirez (2-1) in the second round of their light flyweight match on Friday Nov. 18, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Stephanie Spehar (1-2) defeated Widnelly Figueroa (0-1) by majority decision after four rounds in a lightweight contest on Thursday Nov. 17, in Detroit, Michigan.

On Saturday Nov. 26, in Los Angeles, a lightweight contest features Lisa Porter (0-0) making her pro debut versus Haley Pasion (1-0) in a four round bout.



Mariam Moreno (4-0) stopped Michelle Uribe (0-2) at the end of the third round of their featherweight clash on Friday Nov. 18, in Los Teques, Venezuela. The fight was held under three-minute rounds.


(Photo by Irish Daily Star)