Things are starting to fall into place and Eddie Hearn believes that we are close to a Katie Taylor v Amanda Serrano Madison Square Garden mega fight.
The Irish undisputed lightweight champion and the New York seven-weight world titlist have long been linked with an ongoing saga stretching back three years. At times the likelihood of the match-up actually happening have seemed remote but Matchroom boss Hearn is confident now that the bout is close.
35-year-old Taylor [18(6)-0] fights Korean-American IBF mandatory Jennifer Han [18(1)-3(0)-1] next Saturday [September 4th] in Leeds and Hearn suggests that another mandatory could follow before the end of 2021 followed by a Serrano showdown in the new year.
(In terms of Taylor’s mandatories, it appears that Kazakh Firuza Sharipova is next in line for the WBA and old foe Delfine Persoon is the top-rated fighter with the WBC. The WBO do not have a public women’s rankings)
If Taylor can get through her mandatories, the path seems to be clearing for a scrap with Serrano [40(30)-1(0)-1].
The Puerto Rican fights this weekend on the Jake Paul v Tyron Woodley undercard in Cleveland, defending her WBO and WBC featherweight titles versus Mexican Yamileth Mercado on the SHOWTIME PPV. While she should prevail, it’s a second solid fight for Serrano who unified versus Daniela Romina Bermudez in March. The Caribbean power puncher also won MMA bouts in May and June on iKON Fighting Federation cards – a UFC-subsidary.
32-year-old Serrano had appeared set to fight Taylor in Manchester in May of last year before the pandemic intervened. Plans to re-fix the bout for Fight Camp then collapsed and Taylor instead rematched Delfine Persoon.
Since the quite ugly fall-out last summer, talk of Taylor-Serrano has been relatively quiet as the controversial Brooklyn boxer sought to first unify the featherweight division [Mexican Erika Cruz is WBA featherweight champion and Faroe Islander Sarah Mahfoud holds the IBF belt]. To his end, DiBella has suggested a 2022 clash of undisputeds.
Outlining his own star’s plans, Essex promoter Hearn noted how “she’s got to go through and box off a couple of mandatories – of which Jennifer Han is one.”
“The Serrano fight is still THE fight. That’s the fight. We’re talking to Lou DiBella [Serrano’s manager], we’re talking to Madison Square Garden, I think that’s the biggest fight in women’s boxing.”
“I know we’ve had our backs and forwards but I’ve spoken to Lou and I think everyone feels, as long as the deal’s right, that fight can happen and I’d love to make that happen.”
“I see March or April time, at Madison Square Garden, Taylor versus Serrano.”
Hearn has previously spoken of his and DAZN’s desire for Taylor to fight in New York around International Women’s Day [March 8th 2022] and this latest update would appear to fit into this idea.
Watch IFL TV’s interview with Eddie Hearn in full below: