Katie Taylor (6-0) will attempt to become Ireland’s latest boxing world champion this weekend when she takes on Argentina’s WBA world lightweight champion Anahi Esther Sanchez (17-2) in Cardiff on the undercard of Anthony Joshua’s heavyweight title defence against Carlos Takam.
Taylor, who is considered by many to be one of Ireland’s most successful athletes of all time, is a heavy favourite to return to her native country with the world title and, according to comments made to the media in advance of this weekend’s bout, plans to defend the title in her homeland should she emerge successful.
“I suppose, ideally, a title fight in Dublin or Ireland would be perfect really – to get the home crowd behind me as well – but I find it hard to be disappointed because this is my first world-title fight,” Taylor said as quoted by the Irish Examiner.
“I’m boxing on the undercard of one of the biggest stars in boxing at the moment. It’s going to be a sell-out stadium and I expect to be high up on the card as well, so I can’t really be disappointed with that. I’m just very excited and put on a really good show,” said Taylor. “Hopefully I get the win and I can defend the belt at home in Dublin then.”
Taylor entered the professional ranks last year after a hugely successful amateur career, which saw her claim Olympic gold in 2012 as well as five consecutive gold medals at the Women’s World Championships, six golds at the European Championships and a further five gold medals at the European Union Championships. Her professional career has continued in similar vein, with four wins before the distance in her six bouts.
With an 11-week training camp behind her, Taylor enters her first world title bout in fine form according to her manager Brian Peters.
“She’s had a good long camp, a great lead-up,” Peters said. “This is a good champion she’s facing and that’s what Katie wanted – a real challenge – because we’ve had difficulty getting opponents.”