Taylor wins tight tense tussle to guarantee at least silver

Bray lightweight Katie this morning narrowly won her semi final at the European Games and is now one win away from a NINETEENTH major international gold medal.

It was a tough fight in Baku for Taylor who had to fight out of her skin to secure a split decision win over home favourite Yana Alekseevna.

All four rounds were split and the final scorecards read 38-38 across the board forcing the judges to nominate a winner – with two going for Taylor and one for Alekseevna.

Taylor began the fight by getting in and out of range to land short shots. The Bray boxer was caught a few times on the way out and this seemed to impress the judges, two of whom who gave the first to the Azeri.

The second saw Taylor stand and trade more and she took the round with two judges – leaving the fight all square at the halfway point.

Alekseevna had more success in the third which she took on two cards, however Taylor landed the heaviest blows of the round. Taylor entered the last in the unfamiliar position of being down on two scorecards but she stayed calm boxed well from range to level the scores. After a few anxious moments Taylor was confirmed the winner, guaranteeing her a silver medal and keeping her four year unbeaten record in tact.

Taylor will now face France’s Estelle Mossely in the final tomorrow at 14:00 Irish time. Mossely was highly impressive in her semi final win over Germany’s Tasheena Bugar – but Taylor, who defeated Mossely in the final of last year’s European Championships, will be confident of another win.

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