Exclusive: Barry McGuigan praises Josh Taylor, talks Ohara Davies performance and persona

Joe Hewlett 20/07/2017


Josh Taylor won the bragging rights recently as he disposed of Ohara Davies in the seventh round to add the WBC Silver super-lightweight title to his mantlepiece.

The Scot has since been linked with a showdown against fellow Scot and former three-weight world champion Ricky Burns.

His promoter Barry McGuigan was impressed with the ‘Tartan Tornado’s’ performance against Davies as Taylor scored a career-best victory in Glasgow.

“He was magnificent. He just dismantled the guy and broke him down. I loved the way he fought and his tactics with Shane were magnificent,” McGuigan exclusively told World Boxing News.

“Shane said to him, ‘look, you’ve gotta use your boxing (skills) and keep him distanced. Don’t just lean and stand back, select your shots and beat him to the punch.

“Don’t be trying to take him out, just bide your time.’ The way he was able to switch to the body, then switch to the head to pick out his shots and nullify Ohara Davies was magnificent.

“The way Josh and Shane are working together is great. He’s a very talented boy and Shane is a fabulous coach. He is able to get the very best out of guys. What he has given Josh is natural movement and is working with him on how to close opponents down.”

Ohara has been heavily criticized for his performance as he turned away from his rival to signify he wanted no more involvement from their brawl.

However, McGuigan defended the Londoner and questioned the motives of those who pointed their finger.

“He didn’t give up, he was beaten up.

“I don’t like these people saying he quit. Nobody quits. If a fighter has had enough, they might turn away and resign in a different way but he had been dropped twice and was going to get badly knocked out. What’s wrong with saying that’s enough?

“I really don’t like particularly how boxers say he quit. That is just the deepest insult you could give anybody. What does quitting mean? Does it mean you have to get brain damage, is that what quitting is?

“I’ve been in a tragic fight and have seen many tragic fights, I just think it’s really bad for anyone to say that. Boxers should never say that.

“Every one of us is human and have a limit to how many punches you can take so the main thing is to not set yourself up for a fall by saying you’re gonna do this and do that. You don’t need to say, ‘I’m going to wallop ya,’ or ‘you’re a piece of s**t,’ all of that is so unnecessary.”

The national treasure also admitted Ohara’s social media antics can eventually backfire on the Hackney man.

“Ohara in turn, invites all of this; there’s no question about it. He’s an acquired taste and people do get irritated by his horrible jibes on social media, he doesn’t need to do that but the point I’m making is, nobody quits in this game.

“We need to be more sportsmanlike. In a business where we’ve had five serious injuries in 2016 and two deaths – for God Almighty’s sake,” added ‘The Clones Cyclone.’

Joe Hewlett is lead writer for World Boxing News. Follow Joe on Twitter @Hewlett95