Savannah Marshall and Claressa Shields’ extraordinary, bitter rivalry has been unraveled in a revealing, tell-all documentary.
Produced by BOXXER, the fascinating feature piece uncovers the makings of both world champions and what is driving them in their bid to become the world’s undisputed best, less than a week before the most anticipated female female of all-time.
Including exclusive interviews and previously unseen material, the film – now live on YouTube – hears from both fighters, their camps and learns all about how their incredible, decade-long feud began, with predictions from both on how it will end at The O2 in London on Saturday, 10th September.
Shields vs Marshall
Hear their contrasting tales as Hartlepool-born Savannah Marshall details how she combated her timidness as a youngster to being crowned WBO world middleweight champion.
And American two-time Olympic gold medalist and reigning WBC, IBF and WBA world champion Claressa Shields discusses her harrowing upbringing as a child which drove her to global superstardom.
PLUS, hear from the likes of BOXXER CEO and Founder Ben Shalom, Peter Fury, Savage Dan, Spencer Oliver and more as they deliver their verdicts ahead of this titanic all-Atlantic tussle which takes place in the capital in just over a week’s time.
Below are selected quotes from the documentary:
On starting boxing, aged 12: “I was very sporty growing up. I played football, netball… but [aged 12] I walked into a boxing gym because one of my friends had a little plastic trophy, which I saw glisten in the sun. And I thought, I want one of them.
“Curiosity took a hold of me. I was more curious than anything. But I remember walking up the steps in the gym, hearing music blasting and bags being punched.
“I was stood at the door looking through the glass, thinking I want to go in. Looking back now, and considering our painfully shy I was at that age, I can’t believe I done that.”
On Claressa Shields proclaiming to be the G.W.O.A.T (Greatest Woman of All-Time): “Claressa’s quite comical. There’s nothing she can do or say that will effect me.”
On discovering her renowned hard-hitting punching power: “I remember when I was younger, one month my mum got a discount on some steaks. And that was all we ate: steak and chips, steak pie, steak stew, steak and dumplings… you name it, we had it. So that must be why.”
On breaking away from being ‘shy’: “Everyone’s talking about the evolution of Savannah Marshall. I’ve gone from being a relative mute to being the not-so ‘Silent Assassin’.”
On working with Peter Fury: “I always knew I could dig. But when I got to train with Peter, he showed me how to punch properly.”
On losing to Savannah Marshall as an amateur – her only, ever defeat: “It was a whirlwind getting there but I never quit. After I lost to Savannah Marshall I was very angry about it.”
On her harrowing upbringing – and what has driven her to success in Boxing: “I didn’t talk a lot growing up. I didn’t talk until I was 5. And then, at the age of 11, I started boxing.
“I look at where I come from, and I come from the bottom – and I don’t think what people realise what the bottom is. I won the Olympics.
“But before I left home, I didn’t even have a bed to sleep in.”
“I went through some things growing up. I got sexually abused when I was 5. That made me really angry and confused towards people. I didn’t have a bed until after the Olympics – and that was at 17. From 14-17, and even before then, I was sleeping on floors.
“People wonder why I’m so hungry, it’s because it’s what I have to do for myself. If I didn’t, me and my family would have been poor forever. With the skills I have, I was never going to settle for that. I knew I was going to do something with them. But I had to win the Olympics. I had to win world championships.
“I don’t hate these girls, but they have to understand how much I have to win. They just don’t get it.”
“Look at the difference now in Savannah in her professional days. She’s gone from being in the middle of cards to headlining events and selling out arenas, including her home city of Newcastle, which she could have only dreamt. I think this is the biggest women’s fight of all-time. But this is definitely the biggest rivalry in women’s boxing history.”
“When I first met Savannah it was in 2010 when she was boxing for England and we saw her in Sheffield. It was myself, Johnny Nelson and Adam Smith.
“We all went up there to see Savannah because she was a girl with unbelievable talent – but she didn’t believe in herself. Confidence was a massive issue. If you don’t believe in yourself in boxing, you’re in trouble. You need that self-belief. But she has discovered it – and she did that by teaming up with Peter Fury.
“It’s an incredible journey from where she has come from to where she is now. She is arguably the best female fighter in the world – and we’re going to find that out.”
“She’s the perfect student. She’s strictly business. Be diets, training regimes… whatever you throw at her, she does. You couldn’t ask for a better person to be with and to train with. She’s a no-nonsense type of person.”
Shields vs Marshall, for the undisputed world title, headlines BOXXER: ’Legacy’ – a historic all-female night of boxing – on Saturday, September 10th at The O2 in London, live and exclusive on Sky Sports. For tickets visit Boxxer.com