Katie Taylor claims historic world title win, Kal Yafai retains

Joe Hewlett 28/10/2017

Roars erupted from Cardiff to Ireland as Olympic gold-medallist Katie Taylor claimed her maiden world championship in the professional ranks.

In just her seventh fight since Rio, the 26-year-old, snared victory from tough former champion Anahi Sanchez in front of 70,000+ fans at the Principality Stadium.

At one stage it seemed likely she would stop the Argentine after a clinical body shot sent her opponent to the canvas in round two.

Taylor continued her explosive start, delivering a crisp left hook to the chin to wobble Sanchez in the third before the South American rumbled back with some swift counterpunchers.

It was obvious Sanchez was prepared for battle despite being stripped of her world title due to of missing weight at the scales.

At times, it was scrappy by both women, but Taylor was the much busier fighter and won the fight via a wide score of 99-90 on all three cards.

Birmingham’s Kal Yafai will have intentions of cementing a unification clash across the Atlantic next year as he produced a mature performance to fend off Japan’s Sho Ishida.

Yafai reigned supreme after twelve rounds with all judges in favour of the Brummy scoring it 118-110, 116-112 x 2, allowing the WBA champ to keep his 115lb strap.

With the win, Yafai extends his polished record to 23-0-0.

Speaking to Sky Sports after the fight, he admitted he was frustrated he couldn’t make a statement of intent towards the other world champions within the super-flyweight division:

“I wasn’t too impressed, bit sluggish, but I got the win against an awkward opponent.”

Despite an impressive win, Yafai admitted his hands hampered his progression.

“My hands are sore, so we’ll see how long they will keep me out. If I could get out in the spring, that would be great.”

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