NEW YORK – Now that Amanda Serrano has handled her business with Erika Cruz, the seven-division champion can focus on the career-defining fight that awaits her.
Promoter Eddie Hearn announced in the ring after Serrano defeated Cruz by unanimous decision that the new undisputed featherweight champion will fight rival Katie Taylor in a lightweight championship rematch May 20 in Dublin. Ireland’s Taylor (22-0, 6 KOs), who edged Serrano (44-2-1, 30 KOs) by split decision last April 30 at a sold-out Madison Square Garden, will fight in her home country for the first time as a professional.
Taylor, the undisputed lightweight champion, watched Serrano defeat Cruz from a ringside seat at Madison Square Garden’s sold-out Hulu Theater. The 36-year-old Taylor entered the ring afterward to help promote their intriguing rematch.
Their 10-round rematch for Taylor’s IBF, WBA, WBC and WBO titles likely will be held at 3Arena in Dublin, though the venue wasn’t announced late Saturday night.
“My whole team was cheering [Serrano] on because we want this fight, undisputed champion versus undisputed champion,” Taylor told DAZN’s Chris Mannix in the ring after Serrano’s win. “The last fight was an epic fight, and I think the next one is gonna be exactly the same.”
Hearn, whose company promotes Taylor, had hoped to stage Taylor’s homecoming bout at Croke Park, an outdoor stadium in Dublin that can accommodate more than 80,000 fans for boxing. Hearn informed BoxingScene.com and other outlets recently that staging Taylor-Serrano II there would be too expensive.
The Taylor-Serrano rematch is the most profitable fight that could’ve been made in women’s boxing.
“Well, this is still the biggest fight in women’s boxing,” Taylor said. “And I only want the biggest fights. Yeah, this is exactly what I want.”
Their fantastic first fight attracted an announced crowd of 19,187 to Madison Square Garden.
Brooklyn’s Serrano, a powerful southpaw, battered and bloodied Taylor during the fifth round of that slugfest, but a resilient Taylor recovered and rallied in the later rounds to beat Serrano on two scorecards. Judge Benoit Roussel scored Serrano a 96-94 winner over Taylor, but judges Guido Cavalleri (96-93) and Glenn Feldman (97-93) overruled him.
“You know, Katie is a true champion,” said Serrano, who suffered a cut over her right eye during her victory over Cruz. “And she came here to New York and [we] fulfilled both of our dreams fighting each other. Now she deserves to fight in Ireland. And it’s gonna be a bigger and better fight over there.”
The 34-year-old Serrano is most comfortable fighting at featherweight, the division in which she became the undisputed champion Saturday night, but the Taylor rematch is by far the most lucrative fight for her. Serrano defended her IBF, IBO, WBC and WBO belts and won the WBA crown from Mexico City’s Cruz (15-2, 3 KOs), who bravely batted through a nasty laceration on her forehead for six-plus rounds.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.
ADD COMMENT VIEW COMMENTS (22)