Saturday 23 September 2017

Katie Taylor lined up for a huge world title fight in Dublin this year

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 29: Katie Taylor celebrates victory over Nina Meinke in the WBA Lightweight Championship bout at Wembley Stadium on April 29, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 29: Katie Taylor celebrates victory over Nina Meinke in the WBA Lightweight Championship bout at Wembley Stadium on April 29, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Katie Taylor admitted she 'could do better' after her seventh round stoppage of Nina Meinke secured her the WBA intercontinental lightweight title.

After dominating her inexperienced opponent from first to last on the huge Wembley Stadium stage, Taylor conceded she was not at her best as she struggled to settle into her stride fighting in a vast 90,000-seater stadium.

A world title fight in Dublin later this year is now very much on Taylor's agenda, but she admits improvements are needed if her rapid rise up the professional ranks are to lead to world title glory on home soil in November.

"I'm always a bit critical of myself and I thought I was a bit scrappy at times," said Taylor. "She was a great opponent and I was expecting a tough fight, so thank God I got the win.

"I definitely felt how big the occasion was. You just have to focus on the fight. There is a ring in the middle of the stadium and you just have to box as normal and stay focused, but it wasn't easy.

"It's incredible to have been on such a big stage, the biggest fight in British boxing history so it's incredible. It really is.

"I didn't perform to my best tonight and I am going to go back to the drawing board and continue to improve.

"I've been getting some great sparring over the last couple of weeks, so I felt that even in the ring today. She was so weak in comparison to the guys that I’ve been sparring for these last few weeks and I was able to rough her up inside as well.

I probably didn't close the ring off as well as I could at times and my jab was kind of non-existent in the fight as well. There's a few little things I have to improve.

"I think I need a couple more ten rounders under my belt, but I feel I am ready now to box for a world title.

"This was the greatest night of my career so far and hopefully the best is yet to come."

Taylor's promoter Eddie Hearn has confirmed that he is now set to hand Taylor her American debut in June or July, before what he hopes will be a world title shot in Ireland's capital to round out 2017.

"I have the American TV executives telling me that they want Katie Taylor," said Hearn. "She is the most exciting name in women's boxing at the moment and we will look to get her on the undercard of a big fight on the west coast or maybe headlining a show on the east coast.

"This was another great performance. There was a lot of pressure on Katie tonight on this massive stage, but she showed again what a talent she is."

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