Katie Taylor maintained her undefeated lightweight streak on Saturday evening, unanimously out boxing Kazakhstan’s Firuza Sharipova at the M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool.
The 5th time the champion has been challenged for her WBA, WBC, WBO, IBF and Ring Magazine belts, the hard fought battle saw the 35 year old come away with the bout when the three judges assessed the win at 98-92, 97-92 and 96-93.
20-0 🥊 Perhaps not a vintage Katie Taylor performance yet she still comes away with a unanimous victory against a gutsy and highly technical Firuza Sharipova. Job done. Next up the biggest fight in women’s boxing history in April. Fasten your seatbelts.#KatieTaylor pic.twitter.com/MSggKg0klu— Her Sport (@HerSportDotIE) December 11, 2021
The battle was highly contested however as Sharipova was aggressive in her movement and utilised her uppercut as the match progressed, but the Wicklow native’s experienced guile and combative .style saw her competitor vulnerable to return shots which were densely delivered.
The referee was also a big player in the contest, offering rigid instructions to prevent Taylor’s opposition from holding and also deducting a point from the Kazakhstan fighter in the sixth round when she hit the Eddie Hearn promoted athlete after the pair were told to break.
The 2012 Olympic gold medallist then pushed on from there as Sharipova would have been cognisant that a knockout was probably her only hope of a victory, giving it her all in the final minutes of the 10th round.
Nonetheless, it wasn’t enough to tip the scales and just as her ring walk ‘There She Goes’ had incited a frenzy before the fight ‘Fairytale of New York’ underscored her triumph’s celebrations.
Speaking with DAZN after the announcement she noted that her and her team were “prepared for whatever [Sharipova] brought” and that “it was great to be part of such a big night.”
“She was a good amateur with good technique. The fight went exactly as we had planned. She was very scrappy inside” Taylor said.
Next up in her path is “the biggest fight ever in women’s boxing” as Ireland’s golden girl is set to clash with Amanda Serrano in “the Mecca of boxing” that is Madison Square Gardens.
Pictured as “more than a dream” by Taylor the encounter is predicted to pose a certain challenge for the now 20-0 professional boxer and is expected to take place in April of 2022.