From one superstar to another.
Laila Ali’s father was none other than arguably the biggest sportsperson of all time in Muhammad Ali. Despite this, she carved out her own legendary boxing career.
Ali won all 24 of her professional bouts from 1999 to 2007, the highlight of which was a four round KO win over multiple world champion Christy Martin.
Since her retirement, women’s boxing fell out of prominence despite the best efforts of the likes of Holly Holm and Cecilia Braekhus. But Katie Taylor’s arrival on the professional scene changed all that.
Having won Olympic gold in 2012, Taylor joined the pro ranks in 2016 after a shock defeat in that year’s Olympic games. With a 10-0 record, the Bray woman can already lay claim to both the IBF and WBA lightweight titles.
Taylor has featured prominently on undercards on both sides of the Atlantic, and was the first women’s headliner on a Sky Sports boxing broadcast in her win over Jessica McCaskill last year. Her progress hasn’t gone unnoticed by Ali, who told OnHerTurf of her admiration for the Irishwoman.
“One of the new women in the game who constantly inspires me, and I know she’s going to be amazing, is a young girl named Katie Taylor. She’s representing women’s boxing so well.”
— Brian Peters (@BPPboxing) August 23, 2018
Taylor was understandably thrilled with the praise, writing on Twitter: “Honoured! So grateful for the words of encouragement from a sporting icon who I respect and admire!”
Honoured! So grateful for the words of encouragement from a sporting icon who I respect and admire! https://t.co/5cxolOjGOz
— Katie Taylor (@KatieTaylor) August 24, 2018
Taylor’s next outing is likely to be in Chicago in October, against former WBO featherweight champion, Cindy Serrano.