herald

Tuesday 25 April 2017

Taylor moves it up a notch

Bray boxer well on course for an autumn title fight in Dublin
Katie Taylor
Katie Taylor

Fresh from her fourth win in four months in the professional ranks, Katie Taylor took time out yesterday to celebrate Mother's Day with her mother Bridget at their home in Bray.

Bridget was in Manchester Arena on Saturday night to witness Katie's emphatic points win over the experienced Bulgarian Melina Kolvena.

Mother and daughter were reunited afterwards in the dressing room as Katie, who has a new training base in Vernon, Connecticut, has been given some time off by her coach Ross Enamait.

"I'm staying at home for a few days just to catch up on family and then I'll back (to the States) during the week. Life is very good out there. I'm very busy with training so I haven't much time for anything else," said Taylor. "Cooking is probably the worst part about being away. I miss my Mammy for cooking."

Ironically, since turning professional the 2012 Olympic gold medalist can actually eat more. Throughout her amateur career she boxed in the 132lb lightweight division. Due to variations in the weight limits in professional boxing compared to the amateur women's version, she is now boxing in the 135lb super featherweight division. She weighed in at a career high of 134.6lb for Saturday's fight

Her coach Enamait explained that the extra weight allowance means she can build up more muscle power. "It's not about working off weight, it's about building up strength."

This was the first time in her still fledgling pro career that Taylor boxed for eight rounds. Her first three fights were over six rounds, only one of them going the full distance.

Taylor marked the milestone of going into a seventh round for the first time in her career by putting Kolvena, 28, who had challenged for the IBF World super featherweight title in January, on the canvas for the first and only time in a one-sided contest.

Survived

Kolvena comfortably survived the count and finished the contest.

Ever the perfectionist, though, Taylor was slightly disappointed that she had to rely on referee Howard Foster who scored all eight rounds in her favour, giving her an emphatic 80-72 points win.

"Obviously I would have loved to get the stoppage but speaking to Brian (Peters, her manager) and Ross (Enamait) I'm delighted to get the eight rounds.

Taylor's next confirmed outing is on the undercard of the 90,000 sell-out World heavyweight showdown between Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley on April 29 but she remains on target to fight for a world belt in Dublin in the autumn.

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