Eddie Hearn wants “double act” Katie Taylor and Ryan Burnett to share a card

Eddie Hearn is keen for Ireland’s two current pro world champions to share a card.

The Matchroom boss promotes both IBF and WBA bantamweight champion Ryan Burnett [18(9)-0] and WBA lightweight champion Katie Taylor [7(4)-0] – and wants the two Irish boxers on the same card.

Taylor, who defends her belt for the first time in London on Friday December 15th, is tentatively scheduled to have a Dublin homecoming next April – while Burnett twice made his return to Belfast this year to win and unify world titles.

Burnett was ringside in the Principality Stadium last month when Taylor outpointed Anahi Sanchez to win the title on the Anthony Joshua v Carlos Takam undercard.

Hearn recalled how “when I saw the picture of Katie and Ryan the other night I thought ‘what a great little double act,’ because we may go to Belfast in the future or Ryan might come to Dublin.”

“I think you have two great World champions there. Ryan flew over because he wanted to watch Katie fight he didn’t come over to watch AJ and afterwards he wanted a picture with Katie.”

“The good thing about having a good stable is people bounce off each other.”

“I think Ryan Burnett and Katie Taylor are a great double act.”

While Taylor’s next few steps seem quite clear, Burnett’s next move is unknown. Hearn has spoken of his desire to continue building in Belfast – while noting a clamour for the Antrim Road man to fight in America.

Burnett is set to return from a neck ligament rupture next yea around next April – maybe lining up with Taylor in the 3Arena.

Indeed with Carl Frampton potentially fighting in Belfast in March and then again at Windsor Park in the Summer – alongside a mooted Mick Conlan homecoming in May – the market for big fight nights in the Titanic City could be perceived to be saturated.

Wherever Burnett does fight next, Hearn believes he has a real rising star and outlined how “Ryan is 25 years old, he is a unified World Champion and he doesn’t get the credit he deserves.”

“He hasn’t been built over the years. We got hold of him when he was 14-0 and he had never really boxed out of Belfast in the early part of his career. The first fight he had in Belfast of any significance was his World title challenge and the second one he had was his unified World title challenge so he was really up against it.”

“He is starting to build a good support now. He has a great image, he is a great ambassador, he is a clean living fighter, he looks the part, he is entertaining to watch and he is a great fighter.”

Taylor met up with Burnett in the hours after her win for the first time in years.

While Taylor was winning gold medal after gold medal in the amateurs at the turn of the decade, Burnett was rounding off his underage career with World Youth silver and Youth Olympic gold.

The pair were team mates at the High Performance Unit in Dublin and even shared the ring together.

Taylor recalled how “I trained with Ryan as an amateur. I remember sparring him once and he punched the head off me.”

“I never got the chance to spar him again so that is in my mind,” joked Ireland’s newest pro world champion.


Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie