'Champion's heart' | 

Katie Taylor says beating Amanda Serrano was 'the best night in my career'

“I showed the champion’s heart in there like I always do. I think time and time again, I always show that champion’s heart when I need to."

Katie Taylor celebrates victory

Sean McGoldrick

KATIE Taylor has described her sensational victory over Amanda Serrano in Madison Square Garden as the best night of her career.

In the sixth defence of her undisputed lightweight world title Taylor staged a Lazarus like comeback in the second half of an amazing contest to deservingly taken the spoils in the first split decision in her professional career. Her winning streak now extends to 21 victories.

“It was the best night in my career for sure. I wasn’t sure if anything could reach my Olympic gold medal moment.

"But tonight (was) absolutely the best moment in my career,” said Taylor who was still bleeding from a head wound at the after-fight press conference in MSG.

Taylor took the biggest battering of her career in the fifth round but somehow managed to stay standing. One of three ringside judges Guida Cavallen scored the round 10-8 in favour of Serrano, though overall he gave Taylor the fight (96-93).

But the Bray pugilist displayed incredible courage to comeback and dominate the closing three rounds.

“I guess that is what my corner was saying I needed the championship rounds. I did what I had to do.

“I showed the champion’s heart in there like I always do. I think time and time again, I always show that champion’s heart when I need to.

“I dug deep when I needed to. I was in the trenches again tonight. Those are career defining moments for sure.

“I think the most important thing is to come out as the winner regardless of whether I performed well or not. Tonight was just fantastic. I had to dig deep in there tonight. I had to produce a career defining performance to actually win.

“What an amazing champion Amanda is as well. A phenomenal fighter and we definitely got the best out of each other for sure.

"Everybody was talking coming into this fight that it was the biggest women’s fight in boxing history, but I think it succeeded everything that people were talking about this week.

“Just walking out to the ring, just looking at a packed stadium. It was unbelievable. It was an absolutely special, special moment,” said Taylor.

There was a verbal agreement between the two camps in the ring immediately after the fight that there would be a rematch.

Fifty years after Croke Park hosted Muhammad Ali the Jones Road venue is emerging as a possible venue for an autumn rematch.

Taylor described the possibility of a rematch in Croke Park as ‘absolutely phenomenal.’

“We want to see the best versus the best. If it was in Dublin, we could sell out Croke Park. If you think the atmosphere was special here, imagine the rematch in front of 80,00 people in Croke Park. It would be absolutely amazing.”

Asked whether he would organise it Matchroom boss Eddie Hearn: “Of course, if she lets me.” ‘Well, you are my promoter,” responded Katie as the pair exchanged banter.

“It felt like Croke Park there tonight. It was absolutely incredible. I am not sure we will get as many Puerto Ricans (to Dublin).

"But it has been on our minds. It would feel a big shame if she didn’t get to fight in Ireland during her career. If we could do that, back-end of the summer.

“It was a tough night. She is going to need some rest. Not too much rest knowing Katie, but it is certainly in the minds of us all,” said the Matchroom boss.

However, Hearn also revealed that Madison Square Garden has offered to host the rematch. The fight was a sell-out with an attendance of 19,187 and there was also speculation about a rematch being staged outdoors in the Yankee Stadium in New York.

There are also doubts over whether Croke Park, which is hosting seven concerts this year, would get permission from Dublin City Council to stage another major no GAA event which would probably have to take place in August.

Hearn described the fight as one of the ‘greatest fights in the history of Madison Square Garden. “Both women deserve such credit. I think now to be honest is the night we stop talking about women’s and men’s boxing because that one of the best fights I ever witnessed live.”

While Amanda Serrano was coy about a rematch saying she would leave it with her team her manager Jake Paul said everybody wanted to see a re-match and he was enthusiastic about the prospect of it taking place in Ireland.

“They came to New York City. If there is a rematch it makes sense to go as a team to Ireland,” said Paul.

He didn’t have to pay his one million dollars bet on the outcome with Eddie Hearn as the wager was withdrawn due to a rule which prohibits promoters from betting on their own fighters.

Today's Headlines

More Boxing

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices

WatchMore Videos