On Saturday night in Ireland, a major championship battle did not go in the native fighter’s favor.
On Saturday, Katie Taylor’s debut professional match in her native Ireland ended in a loss. Chantelle Cameron, the undisputed super lightweight champion, defeated the undisputed lightweight champion in a majority decision in Dublin.
Originally, Taylor was supposed to meet Amanda Serrano in a rematch of their thrilling April 2022 encounter, however the fight was canceled due to Serrano’s injuries from her most recent battle. Taylor instead focused on increasing her weight in an effort to simultaneously claim the title of undisputed champion in two divisions. Instead, she faced battle against a bigger, more aggressive foe who was able to win enough rounds in a terrific action fight to take home two of the three official scorecards.
Early on, Cameron applied pressure in an effort to imitate the success Serrano and Delfine Persoon had against Taylor. In the first round, that worked well for Cameron as she finished the frame with some powerful right hands that were made possible by the pressure.
As usual, Taylor was eager to respond to a constant onslaught of offensive fire with her own shots, but she frequently allowed herself to be pushed back. Although Cameron was delivering plenty of powerful hooks to Taylor’s body as well, Taylor’s strongest moments in the first half of the fight came from her jab and body shots.
Taylor would find openings in each round to stand her ground and throw flurry of punches, each time drawing a cheer from the audience that might have an impact on the ringside judges. Cameron’s persistent pressure appeared to be winning her most of the rounds.
Beginning in the eighth round, Cameron did exhibit some swelling near her right eye. Taylor’s increased use of left hooks in the second half of the battle contributed to that swelling.
The Irish crowd rose to their feet once more as the two ladies engaged in a fierce final round, standing toe-to-toe and trading powerful blows. Taylor persisted in trying to win some crucial late rounds.
Despite Taylor’s valiant efforts, Cameron won the bout 96-94 on one judge’s scoring and 95-95 on the other two, respectively.
Cameron remarked of hearing the 95-95 score: “I was terrified. “I’ve witnessed it in boxing before. My team has experienced it previously. I was terrified that the decision would not be in my favor. A tight battle took place. The battle was going to be close. I showed up for the event because Katie is a fantastic fighter and the greatest female boxer pound-for-pound out there.
— DAZN Boxing (@DAZNBoxing) May 20, 2023
Taylor accepted losing her homecoming bout and suffering her first defeat as a professional and didn’t declare victory, but she did make it plain there would be a rematch right afterwards.
Sincerely, I’m not sure [who won],” Taylor admitted. I’ll need to look into that. The battle was really tight. Although my homecoming didn’t go as I had hoped, I am incredibly grateful for the help. Best wishes to Chantelle. I appreciate the chance to compete for your titles, and I look forward to the rematch.
Following the interviews with the two contestants, promoter Eddie Hearn affirmed that the contract included a rematch option and that the contestants would resume their contest in Dublin later this year.