Katie Taylor v Amanda Serrano 2: Croke Park showdown in October on the cards as talks begin

30 April 2022; Katie Taylor and coach Ross Enamait, left, celebrate victory after her undisputed world lightweight championship fight with Amanda Serrano at Madison Square Garden in New York, USA. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Seán McGoldrick

A rematch between Katie Taylor and Amanda Serrano is being planned for Croke Park in October.

It would be the first time in the history of boxing that two female fighters would top the bill in a mega stadium fight.

Taylor’s manager Brian Peters is already back in Ireland and work on what would be a mammoth project is under way.

Matchroom boss Eddie Hearn is backing the project, but the key issue is getting streaming network DAZN, who would stream the fight live worldwide, to agree. Their financial backing is crucial for the project to be viable.

The majority of the DAZN’s subscribers are based in the United States and transmitting the fight in mid-afternoon in America is not ideal.

However, the magnitude of the show might be sufficient to convince them that time issues don’t matter. An ambitious plan to show the fight live on RTE will also be explored.

Ever since she began her professional career in 2016, Taylor has expressed a desire to fight in her own country.

However, a series of events beginning with a fatal shooting in 2016 at a boxing weigh-in in the Regency Hotel, the influence of MTK, co-founded by Daniel Kinahan, in the sport and exorbitant public liability insurance costs scuppered those plans.

But Taylor’s management team now believe the time is right to stage a fight in Ireland and are optimistic they can pull off a mega Taylor v Serrano II in Croke Park.

The stadium has a capacity of 80,000 for concerts, but Hill 16 is not used because the stage is built in front of it. However, in a professional boxing show, the ring would be in the middle of the field, so it is hoped the capacity could be at least 90,000 for the fight.

Madison Square Garden have already offered to stage the rematch, but the first choice of the Taylor camp is Croke Park. “If you think the atmosphere was special here, imagine the rematch in front of 80,000 people in Croke Parl. It would be absolutely nothing,” said Taylor at the after-fight press conference in New York.

Last Saturday night’s fight in MSG was the richest in the history of women’s boxing, with Taylor earning an estimated $2m while Serrano received a $1m paycheque. The two fighters would receive significantly bigger purses for a stadium fight.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the last professional boxing show in Croke Park featuring the legendary Muhammed Ali in 1972. It was a financial flop, but half a century later, the Taylor-Serrano rematch could prove a financial bonanza.

The success of the Taylor-Serrano fight in New York - which has been described as one of the greatest in the fabled history of MSG - has convinced Taylor’s management team the time is right to stage a fitting homecoming for one of Ireland’s greatest sports stars.

It is also a recognition of the fact Katie Taylor cannot produce these epic performances indefinitely. She is reaching the end game of a magnificent career and what better way to bow out than in front of 80,000 fans in Croke Park.

A Croke Park show would also be the ideal opportunity to relaunch professional boxing in the Republic of Ireland. The only disappointing aspect of the MSG bill was that there were no other Irish fighters on the bill. This will not be the case in Croke Park.

With news of Croker being frontrunner for the bout, Taylor is 4/6 favourite with Irish bookmaker Paddy Power with Serrano 5/4 and 12/1 on offer for a draw.

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