Undefeated against undefeated. Undisputed versus undisputed. And it will take place amid the most intense atmosphere imaginable. Boxing doesn’t get much better. For the latest fight odds, visit our sportsbook.
On Saturday night, lightweight queen, Katie Taylor, steps up to 140lbs to challenge super lightweight champion, Chantelle Cameron, in front of what is certain to be a manic crowd in Dublin.
She’s regarded as the greatest female fighter ever
When Amanda Serrano’s injury forced her out of an eagerly awaited rematch with Taylor, the Irish legend chose the next best thing; a clash with Cameron.
The speed at which the fight was put together should serve as an example to men’s boxing where negotiations seem to drag on and on and on. And on.
There were no catchweight demands or rehydration clauses. Taylor asked Cameron if she wanted to fight, Cameron accepted and the pair signed a contract. That may be simplifying things a little but to put this in perspective, can you imagine Devin Haney and Josh Taylor agreeing terms over a weekend? No, I thought not.
Taylor is widely regarded as the greatest female fighter ever and as something of a standard bearer for the sport as a whole. If she can add an undisputed crown in a second weight division to her resume, that legend will reach even higher heights. Her list of amateur achievements is staggering and this will be her 17th consecutive world title fight as a professional. Although she has dominated at lightweight, back in 2019 she did briefly hold the WBO super lightweight title that is currently in Cameron’s possession. There have been razor thin decisions against Delfine Persoon and Amanda Serrano but Taylor has always emerged victorious.
If she can’t outbox you, she’ll outfight you
Taylor is 36 now and has been getting hit more and more as her career has gone on – although that is partly down to the quality of opposition she has been facing – and it isn’t heresy to say that the fighter has passed the peak of her career and is on a slow decline to retirement. Nonetheless, she is still capable of tapping into seemingly bottomless reservoirs of stamina and desire to outlast her rivals. It is a testament to Taylor’s determination to be the best that she has managed to stay at the top despite her age. If she can’t outbox you for ten rounds anymore, she will outfight you. It has proven to be an impossible combination to beat.
Cameron progressed quietly while Taylor was taking female boxing to new heights but there was always something different about her. She had the solid amateur background provided by her time with Team GB but the thing that made her stand out was her finishing ability. Whereas her peers were scoring impressive but routine decision victories, Cameron was stopping the same fighters.
For some reason, her action-packed style never really caught on with the public but for those involved in the sport, she became a more and more viable challenger to Taylor with every win and every title belt. Things changed last November when she successfully prevented undisputed welterweight champion, Jessica McCaskill, from taking her 140lb crown. Cameron suddenly went from being a possible Taylor opponent to a probable one.
It wasn’t supposed to happen now, though. It took the injury to Serrano and Taylor’s unwavering self-belief and commitment to challenging herself to bring them together but we finally have the fight some of us have waited so long for.
Taylor is unlikely to blow Cameron away
Taylor seems certain to start quickly. She is used to being at the centre of tumultuous atmospheres and the noise inside the 3Arena will be ear-splitting by the time the opening bell rings. Cameron mustn’t panic and can’t afford to over reach or throw too wide. Taylor is unlikely to possess the power to blow Cameron away but if she is able to pick holes in Cameron early, it could prove an impossible tide to hold back. Cameron needs to keep her defences tight and take advantage of every opportunity Taylor allows her. And there will be opportunities. It may not be the wisest strategy but Taylor will hold her feet and exchange at times. She can’t help herself.
If Cameron is able to touch Taylor enough to sap some of her speed over the course of the first five rounds, things are going to get very interesting. Taylor always finishes strongly but if she needs to find a grandstand finish against a fighter who isn’t only bigger and heavier handed than her, but also possesses world class skills then the homecoming could very easily turn into a nightmare.
It is very, very tempting to pick Cameron to chip away at Taylor early and impose herself with harder punches as the fight gets more frantic in the later rounds. A Cameron decision is priced at 21/10 and if you think Cameron can stop a tiring Taylor, you can get 17/2.
The pick here – and it isn’t a confident one – is for Taylor to still have enough quickness and sharpness to build a sizeable lead and enough heart and desire to hold and battle her way through some scary late moments to take a decision victory, available at 7/10.