The dust has yet to fully settle on Natasha Jonas’ split decision victory over Mikaela Mayer on Saturday night. 

The boxing world is united in its admiration of a quality bout, but debate continues to rage over the result of the IBF welterweight title fight.

After feeling her way into her first fight at 147lbs, Mayer visibly grew in confidence and began to build momentum. The second half of the fight became a pitched battle but rather than trying to match the marauding American punch for punch, Jonas smartly chose her moments, looking to land hard and fast before edging away and resetting. 

Jonas’ trainer, Joe Gallagher, believes that the calm way his fighter responded to Mayer’s mid-round charge was the key to retaining her title. 

“I think it was after five rounds I said to Tasha, ‘Listen, we’d say it’s 4-1 but be kind to Mikaela and we’re 3-2. Let’s reset, refocus. Round six is round one and let’s win three of the last five rounds and we’ve won the fight.’

“It was just about keeping composure. I said in the corner, ‘Listen, you need a cool head in a hot kitchen and don’t get carried away with the crowd and the punches. Mikaela’s going to bring hell here. You’ve got to keep a cool head. She wants to drag you in.’ 

“Natasha did it. We’re sat here ‘and still’ the world champion. Like Natasha said in the ring, it’s not for us to decide her place in sporting history in the city of Liverpool but I would say she’s definitely right up there as one of the very best boxers of all time to come out of this city.”

During her post fight interview, 39-year-old Jonas admitted that this is likely to be her last year in the sport. 2020 Olympic gold medalist Lauren Price was at ringside and is hoping for her opportunity next, but Jonas will want to capitalize on her success and popularity by taking the highest profile and most lucrative fights available.

The rise of women’s boxing can be traced all the way back to the London Olympics in 2012 and Jonas and Katie Taylor were right there at the B of the Bang.

The pair’s quarter final clash generated noise records. Taylor won a decision and went on to win the gold medal. In 2021, they met as professionals at the Manchester Arena and - once again - Taylor got the nod from the judges, successfully defending her undisputed lightweight title with a close but unanimous decision.

Although a rematch with Mayer would do good business, Gallagher would like to see Jonas complete the circle and bring down the curtain on her career by boxing Taylor, who added another chapter to her own storied career last November when she outpointed Chantelle Cameron to avenge the only defeat on her record and become the undisputed super lightweight champion.

“I would love to see the Katie Taylor fight. I think there’s great history there,” Gallagher said. “They started the rivalry in 2012 in a fantastic fight and I think for the two of them to have the last dance together [after] they’ve won world titles from 135lbs up to 154lbs, to see the two of them fight inside an arena or at Croke Park or Anfield, wherever. I just think they’d be ideal dance partners and then she can go into the sunset and succeed as a manager.”