Josh Taylor shines under WBSS lights

Josh Taylor defended his WBC Silver title and moved into the semi-final of the World Boxing Super Series.

Taylor put on a faultless display against American Ryan Martin. Martin, it seemed, never got going and looked a bit like a rabbit in headlights at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow.

Straight from the first bell, Taylor was slick, fast and accurate. In the build-up, we heard how the highly rated Martin was meant to be all these things however Taylor was the one to display it on the night.

Every round was a continuation of Taylor’s dominance until the fight was stopped in the 7th round. Incidentally, this was probably Martin’s best round as he started the round landing a few shots. This only galvanised Taylor as the round went on and he landed a big left hook that dropped Martin. The referee had seen enough and stopped the fight.

Taylor now moves on to the semi-final and faces IBF world champion Ivan Baranchyk, in what will be Taylor’s first bid for a world title.

In the post-fight press conference, Taylor said, “I knew I was gonna win the fight. I was expecting a hard 12 rounds…credit to Ryan Martin for putting up a good fight but, in all honesty, I never got out of second gear. I was relaxed, I was flowing, and the fight was easy for me.

“I thought it would be a little bit tougher. I proved I’m ready for this next fight against Baranchyk. I’ll do the same again.’’

Looking ahead to his semi-final against Baranchyk,

“I think it’s gonna be an electric fight. He looks very strong, very explosive but, again I’m not gonna let him get close to me so he can lay off those big shots. Like tonight, he couldn’t get a shot off against me; my timing, my speed, my distance control. Everything was just so on song”

“Nobody in this division is gonna beat me.”

In the other main event fight, Belfast’s Ryan Burnett was looking to defend his WBA world bantamweight title against former 4 division champion Nonito Donaire.

The fight started well, both fighters being competitive. Donaire looking to land the big shots with Burnett looking the more faster and slick boxer.

Unfortunately, we were not to witness the fight playing out to its full potential as Burnett suffered an injury while throwing a punch in the 4th round. He gamely tried to carry on but you could see he was in pain.

Burnett was unable to continue into the 5th round meaning Donaire was the new WBA champion and now faces WBO champion Zolani Tete in the semi-final.

The ever-popular Filipino, Donaire, although happy with the win was respectful of Burnett. Donaire was cheered as he gave his thanks to host country Scotland.

In the post-fight press conference, Donaire said, “Ryan was a tough guy, but we felt very comfortable coming in there. Just see the adjustments that I was coming in and I think that it showed what I’m capable of in this weight class.”

This was Donaire’s first fight at bantamweight for 7 years, with some people expecting him to struggle to make weight.

‘‘I’m grateful that I was able to test the weight…Now I’m a lot lighter, you’ll see the Filipino Flash more often.’’

‘‘It didn’t come out the way we wanted it to, but a victory is a victory and we’re so grateful for this opportunity.’’

‘‘Tete’s next.’’

The headline bout of the undercard was for the vacant British Super Middleweight title contested by Zach Parker and Daryll Williams.

The fight was a hard fought, scrappy affair, it seemed Parker had injured his arm early in the fight and the general consensus was Williams had won the fight however Parker won by split decision. The scorecard read 117-112, 113-115, 115-114.

Mick Kane
kane216@btinternet.com
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