Josh Taylor drops, defeats Jose Ramirez to claim undisputed crown at 140
Josh Taylor dropped Jose Ramirez twice before securing a close decision to take all the marbles in the 140-pound division on Saturday night.
Scotland has a new undisputed champion. “The Tartan Tornado” outlasted Ramirez in an instant classic, notching a unanimous decision (114-112 3x) to capture the super-lightweight crowns.
With the win, Taylor becomes the sixth male undisputed champion of the four-belt era and the first from Scotland to do so.
Ramirez, who had been world champion since March 2018, invested in the body in the early going, but Taylor (18-0, 13 KOs) was equal to the task in the trenches.
The tide turned in the sixth round when Taylor nailed Ramirez with a straight left hand as Ramirez lunged forward. In the seventh, an uppercut planted Ramirez to the canvas.
Ramirez (26-1, 17 KOs) nearly dug himself out of the hole, sweeping the last four rounds on one scorecard and winning three of the previous four on the other two.
Taylor said, “I’m ecstatic. I’ve trained my whole life for this. I’ve dedicated my entire life to this moment.
“I’ve dreamt of it so many times over, man. I’m so, so happy. I’m over the moon. I’ve trained for this moment all my life.
“I’ve got nothing but love for Ramirez. This week was no disrespect.
“It was all part of the mind games to get in his head, to make him more eager to jump in at me and be more aggressive, to use his aggression against him.
“I thought the scorecards were a little tight. I thought they were well wider than that. I wasn’t too happy with the selection of the judges, but I wasn’t going to moan. I was confident in winning this fight anyway.”
Ramirez said, “He took advantage of some of those clinches, but, hey, I got back up and tried to give it my best and stay smart. I was never hurt. I was aware. I was just disappointed every time it happened. I tried to shake it off and get back to my rhythm. But it was overall a good fight. Hopefully, I get back, and I learn from my mistakes. You win some, and you lose some.
“I felt like I landed some clean shots. It came down to the clinches. He would let his hands go as soon as he got his chance, and I think I left it to the referee to do his part, and it was a lack of experience on my part.”