Sunday 18 November 2018

Katie to fight in New York as homecoming plans shelved

Katie Taylor Photo: Stephen McCarthy / Sportsfile
Katie Taylor Photo: Stephen McCarthy / Sportsfile

Bernard O'Neill

Katie Taylor is heading back to the 'Big Apple' again after her homecoming bout was spiked in favour of a more lucrative promotion in the USA.

The current WBA lightweight champion was widely expected to put her title on the line in a unification clash in Dublin on April 14.

But the London 2012 gold medallist is now being lined up to defend her belt at the Barclays Centre in New York on April 28 on the Danny Jacobs undercard live on Home Box Office (HBO).

Taylor's second fight at the Barclays Centre was listed on Boxrec yesterday, although the Bray woman's team have yet to comment.

Jacobs, who could meet Cork's Gary 'Spike' O'Sullivan in the main event in Brooklyn, is promoted by Eddie Hearn, who also promotes Taylor. Jacobs is Hearn's first US signing and is the standard-bearer in his American Matchroom stable.

The New Yorker was beaten on points by middleweight kingpin Gennady Golovkin at Madison Square Garden last March but earned plaudits for his performance.

Hearn indicated recently that Taylor would box in Dublin in April.

But HBO's involvement with Jacobs and Hearn and the opportunity to introduce Taylor to a massive TV audience in the US on a world-title platform have contributed to Ireland being dumped for Taylor's ninth fight.

Argentina's Victoria Bustos, the current IBF champion, is being touted as a likely opponent for the Wicklow orthodox in a WBA/IBF unifier at the venue she beat Jasmine Clarkson last summer.

Cork middleweight O'Sullivan reckons that if he and Taylor are on the same card in New York that they'll have no problem shifting tickets to Irish fight fans.

"It would easy to move tickets all right. We both have fans and they could combine together. It would be absolutely fabulous if both of us were on the same card. It would attract massive Irish support in New York, he said.

"At the moment we are negotiating with Jacobs's team and we should know more by the end of the week. It's definitely a fight I believe I can win."

Irish Independent

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