Monday 21 October 2019

Katie Taylor was awarded fight on merit, not because of political power - Frampton's 'disgrace' comments were wrong

Katie Taylor celebrates with her mother Bridget and sister Sarah
Katie Taylor celebrates with her mother Bridget and sister Sarah
Katie Taylor celebrates with her belts after victory over Delfine Persoon
Katie Taylor during the fight. Photo: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Ian Gaughran

Ireland's golden girl Katie Taylor has become just the seventh boxer to become the undisputed champion of the world.

Let that sink in a moment. Taylor is not the seventh woman, she's the seventh boxer.

It is a momentous achievement and she should be lauded from on high for what she has done in the space of 14 fights.

Boxing has two bona fide dominant superstars now, Vasyl Lomachenko and Katie Taylor, and the Bray woman deserves to be placed on her pedestal.

Yes, the fight was tight, yes Delfine Persoon can feel hard done by, but Taylor was awarded the fight on merit, not because of political power, as David Haye put it on Saturday night.

Carl Frampton called the result a "disgrace". Carl is wrong.

He is much better placed than this writer to give that opinion, of course, but to term the victory a disgrace seems very far wide of the mark.

Taylor says there is more to work on and improvements to be made. That's encouraging for fans of the 32-year-old.

On Saturday night her sheer stubbornness dragged her into a bit of a war with her Belgian opponent.

There is a bit of a consensus among potential opponents of Taylor that she doesn't like any of the rough stuff.

She seems to have taken exception to that train of thought and drags herself into dogfights, on the inside, with opponents. It's what happened on Saturday in New York during the second half of the fight.

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Persoon is an aggressive, extremely unorthodox fighter, who is also inclined to use her elbows - as we saw here - and Taylor, having outboxed her early on, got drawn into what became a war.

While she didn't quite gas out, she certainly wilted in the face of Persoon's onslaught.

That made the fight, visually anyway, look like Persoon was the dominant fighter.

She certainly was just that late on, but only late on. There was enough in the bank from the first half of the contest to ensure our girl got the decision.

Regardless of scoring or controversy, the simple fact is Katie Taylor is the undisputed lightweight champion of the world and we, as a nation, are blessed to have her. She is a shining light for all young women to look towards and she leads the way in a time where Irish women time and again do us proud.

Sanita Puspure was busy winning a European Rowing Championships gold yesterday while Taylor basked in her triumph in the Big Apple and, like Puspure, we must show Taylor how much she means to us all.

Heaven knows we've endured enough sporting heartbreak and been on the wrong end of some horrendous decisions and rotten luck.

So what if we got the rub of the green with a controversial decision. Sure doesn't Katie deserve it. Well done champ.

Irish Independent

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