Katie Taylor won’t participate in GWOAT debate

Katie Taylor[19(6)-0] takes a self-praise is no praise approach to the Greatest of All Time debate.

Taylor made her professional debut five years ago today [November 26] and has played a massive part in transforming the female fight game.

The Bray fighter has significantly added to her impressive amateur haul, unifying the lightweight division to become Ireland’s first undisputed world champion of the four-belt era, as well as a two joining the two-weight world champion club.

The undefeated talent has also been involved in some of the most entertaining fights women’s boxing has ever seen, raised the profile of the female side of the sport, helped increase female purses and become a cross-over star known for being a quality boxer regardless of gender.

It’s GWOAT stuff although you’ll never hear Taylor say that. The Olympic champion has talked about making history and impact but unlike her best to do it rivals, the ever-modest Irish sporting sensation doesn’t believe it’s for her to say who is the greatest of all time.

“This is for other people to say. I have no problem sitting back and letting other people say who they want to be the greatest,” she said.

Continuing on the humble theme the undefeated trailblazer also says she is far from the finished article and far from calling it a day.

“You are adopting in training; varying it from time to time and working on those improvements that need to be made. There are things that I am working on in sparring which hopefully will be very important in future fights,” she said.

“There is no such thing as a perfect boxer. I have so many things to work on. It’s great knowing that while I’m 19-0, people haven’t seen the best of me yet

“I can’t wait to produce some great performances. I feel these next years, the final years of my career will be my absolute best in the ring. I can’t wait for people to see that,” added Taylor.

Taylor was also speaking to media from her training base in Vernon, Connecticut for the first time since the 20 year anniversary of the first official female fight to take place in Ireland.

Reflecting on how far the sport and she has come since her clash with Alanna Audley- Murphy the Olympic gold medal winner continued: “As a 15-year-old I had big dreams, big hopes, and I wanted to make an impact on the boxing world. My whole childhood was obviously based around this Olympic dream that I had but never in a million years did I think I’d be in the position I am right now, having the chance to box on the biggest stages in the world as a professional fighter as well.

“It has been absolutely fantastic and just to see where women’s boxing is right now, and the amount of female fighters, it has been a golden moment for women’s boxing over the last few years and that, for me, is everything.

“With the environment I was in I didn’t think about what was realistic. I’m very lucky that I was surrounded by a family that were so encouraging like that.

“My parents always made me believe that nothing was too big for me if I work hard and get my head down.

“You are a product of your environment and I think those encouraging words always sustained me during those times, even during the times I doubted if this was ever going to happen.

“My parents were brilliant like that where they were constantly speaking encouragement into me and it made me believe, made me the fighter I am today.

“I think I always grew up with huge dreams and huge ambitions because of that.”

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com