Amanda Serrano and Others Led Most Successful Month for American Boxing
By David A. Avila
When Amanda Serrano ended her battle of pound for pound fighters with a flourishing knockout of talented Daniela Bermudez, it capped perhaps the greatest month of women’s boxing ever seen by American audiences.
March 2021 was declared International Women’s month and world champions from light flyweight to cruiserweight were spotlighted by television and streaming outlets.
Much of the world got a glimpse of Claressa Shields, Marie Eve Dicaire, Marlen Esparza, Danielle Perkins, Jamie Mitchell, Jessica McCaskill, Cecilia Braekhus, Seniesa Estrada, Anabel Ortiz, Arely Mucino and of course Serrano and Argentina’s Bermudez.
No other period in North American women’s prizefighting has produced the opportunity to see such high-level talent in a single month.
Belief in the sport has led to this success.
It was Shields promotion company Salita Promotions and manager Mark Taffet that gambled on a pay-per-view card bereft of outside funding. The fight show managed to succeed enough to guarantee another pay-per-view card in the near future.
Despite numerous changes including the loss of matchups, the pay-per-view card from Flint, Michigan that took place on March 5, hung tight and produced a card that allowed some fans to see women fighting for titles for the first time.
Shields’ performance after more than a year away proved her to be the best in the sport.
Others like Dicaire, Esparza, Perkins and Mitchell provided a look at the future. It sets up shows down the road and expectations for fans of women’s prizefighting.
Then, the rematch between welterweights McCaskill and Braekhus for all the world titles saw the Chicago fighter succeed again. Her victory over a longtime undefeated boxing great proved that women’s prizefighting has reached parity. Domination for a long period of time may be a thing of the past. Young talent seems to be arriving every day from the amateur boxing world.
A week ago, another long-reigning world champion in Mexico’s Anabel Ortiz saw undefeated Estrada of East L.A. showcase her own unique skills. After knocking down the champion, Estrada brilliantly displayed her flashy technique and 20 years of experience gained in both the amateur and professional fight world. It was riveting.
This past weekend, two more pound for pound fighters who held world titles and had remained unbeaten for years dared to be great. Serrano became the first to knock out the mighty Argentine fighter Bermudez. But it took a willingness for both fighters to accept the challenge.
One reason Serrano and Bermudez were able to meet was through the arrival of Ring City USA that truly believes in female prizefighting as a draw. The battle between the Puerto Rican and Argentine was the first time women headlined one of their cards and it proved to be a dynamic success.
Ring City USA has already telecast several female bouts via NBC Sports Network and Twitch.com
Women’s prizefighting has never been better and there is room to grow.
Japanese women will be taking over Sakai, Osaka when two boxing cards take place on Sunday April 4.
Two different promoters will stage all-women fight cards including a world title bout that features WBO light flyweight world titlist Tsunami Tenkai (27-12-1) and Shione Ogata (11-6-1) meeting 10 rounds in a main event. Tenkai is one of Japan’s strongest and best fighters. Also, on one of the cards, bantamweights Hoju Maeda (0-0) and Saeka Hori (0-1) meet four rounds. Atomweights Kaori Nagai (5-2-3) and Natsuki Tarui (4-6-2) meet six rounds. Other bouts are included.
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Jazmin Villarino (4-1-1) defeated Roxana Bermudez (2-3-2) by unanimous decision after six rounds on Saturday March 27. The flyweight bout took place at Buenos Aires.
Flavia Quintero (2-3) beat Daniela Arenas (0-1) by decision after four rounds. The super lightweight fight took place at Mendoza.
On Friday April 2, flyweights Debora Anahi Lopez (17-0-1) and Debora Gomez (7-5-1) meet 10 rounds for the WBO world title at Buenos Aires. This is a rematch. Also, lightweights Yamila Belen (11-4) and Paola Benavidez (8-4-2) meet 10 rounds for the Argentine title.
Krystina Jacobs (5-1) beat Lorrinda Webb (2-2) by unanimous decision after 10 rounds on Saturday March 27. The WIBA super featherweight title fight took place at Hobart, Tasmania.
Hillary Collins (1-0) won her pro debut by decision over Connie Chan (0-1) after four rounds on Saturday March 27. The super welterweight bout was held at Eatons Hill, Queensland.
On Wednesday March 31, super flyweights Linn Sandstrom (0-1) and Felicity Loiterton (0-0) meet four rounds at Newcastle, New South Wales.
On Saturday April 3, super bantamweights Delphine Mancini (0-0) and Nikola Hubalkova (1-0) meet six rounds at Vise. Also, bantamweights Calliope Slagmulder (0-1) and Marine Tollet (1-4) meet four rounds.
Anissa Benyoub (5-2) defeated Elsa Hemat (1-3) by decision after eight tounds on Friday March 26. The French super lightweight title fight was held at Blagnac.
Cheyenne Hanson (8-1) won by technical decision in the fifth round versus Alina Zaitseva (1-6) on Saturday March 27. The super featherweight fight was held at Bayern.
On Saturday April 3, super bantamweights Felmy Sumaehe (6-0) and Apriani Apriani (0-0) meet six rounds at Jakarta.
Marina Hamada (3-0-1) won by decision after four rounds versus Michiko Abiru (2-5) on Sunday March 28. The flyweight bout was held in Kobe.
On Sunday April 4, light flyweights Tsunami Tenkai (27-12-1) and Shione Ogata (11-6-1) meet 10 rounds for the WBO world title at Sakai, Osaka. This is Tenkai’s third defense of the title. Also, bantamweights Hoju Maeda (0-0) and Saeka Hori (0-1) meet four rounds. Atomweights Kaori Nagai (5-2-3) and Natsuki Tarui (4-6-2) meet six rounds; flyweights Sachiko Kondo (2-5-2) and Kaoru Iga (3-1-1) meet six rounds; light flyweights Aoi Watanabe (2-4) and Sarasa Ichimura (3-7-1) meet four rounds; atomweights Reika Kawaguchi (1-1) and Riyuna Yoshikawa (1-1) meet four rounds; super bantamweights Mika Yagio (0-0) and Aka Ringo (0-0) meet four rounds; and atomweights Natsuki Yamada (0-0) and Sumire Yamanaka (1-0) meet four rounds.
Kallia Kourouni (11-2) won by seventh round technical knockout over Dayanna Gonzalez (6-4-1) on Saturday March 27. The super featherweight title match took place in Tijuana.
On Thursday April 1, flyweights Yadira Bustillos (0-0) and Maria Martinez (1-3-1) meet for four rounds at Los Mochis.
Mea Motu (6-0) won by technical knockout of Tania Reid (2-4-1) in the third round on Friday March 26. The New Zealand lightweight title fight was held at Northcote.
Amanda Serrano (40-1-1) knocked out Daniela Bermudez (29-4-3) in the ninth round on Thursday March 25. The WBO, IBO and WBC featherweight world title clash took place at San Juan. Serrano and Bermudez are both ranked in upper tiers of most pound for pound lists. Also, former flyweight champion Arely Mucino (29-3-2) defeated Lucia Hernandez (7-11) by decision after eight rounds.
Tatyana Zrazhevskaya (11-0) won by unanimous decision after 10 rounds versus Estrella Valverde (18-7-2) on Saturday March 27. The interim WBC bantamweight title fight was held at Ekaterinburg.
On Saturday April 3, lightweights Firuza Sharipova (12-1) and Sofya Ochigava (4-0) meet 10 rounds at Kazan.
On Saturday April 3, lightweights Najma Isike (0-0) and Halima Bandola (0-1) meet four rounds at Dar es Salaam.
Seini Draughn (3-0-1) won technical knockout of Porsha Hines (0-1) in the first round on Friday March 26. The heavyweight fight took place at Rock Hill, South Carolina.