Delfine Persoon is certain she did enough to beat Katie Taylor in their lightweight title fight 14 months ago.
The former WBC women’s 135-pound champion is less confident she won’t end up on the wrong end of another controversial decision Saturday night in Brentwood, England. Their 10-round rematch will be held on the grounds of the headquarters of Matchroom Boxing, Taylor’s promoter, which Persoon sees as a distinct disadvantage for her.
“It can be the same, maybe,” Persoon said Tuesday during a virtual press conference when asked about her concerns regarding the judging of their rematch. “It’s on me to hopefully change it and make this not possible. But it’s difficult, right? It’s boxing, and you have to fight. … We’re gonna box and we’re gonna see. I don’t say I go for a knockout. I just want to give a nice a fight, like the first fight. I hope there is correct judging, and we’ll see.”
Belgium’s Persoon (44-2, 18 KOs) unofficially landed more punches than Taylor in June 2019, but Ireland’s Taylor (15-0, 6 KOs) won a debatable majority decision on the Anthony Joshua-Andy Ruiz Jr. undercard at Madison Square Garden in New York. Judge Don Trella scored it even (95-95), but he was overruled by judges Allen Nace and John Poturaj, both of whom scored the fight 96-94 for Taylor.
After studying film of their thoroughly entertaining encounter, Persoon determined she deserved to win, 96-94.
“For me, the first fight, we don’t think we lose the first fight because you heard [Taylor],” Persoon said, “that she said she takes all the [early] rounds, she did enough in the beginning of the fight. But if you look at the [early] rounds, the first round is for her, but the second and the third rounds are surely not for her. So, she don’t take all the [early] rounds. And then the end, it was me that got the best of her. So, for us, she did not do enough to say [she] won the fight, because in the beginning, in the [early] rounds, [she took] all the rounds. That’s not correct for us.”
According to CompuBox, Persoon landed 13 more punches overall than Taylor (116-of-586 to 103-of-410). CompuBox credited Taylor for connecting with more power punches (93-of-320 to 83-of-360) and counted more jabs for Persoon (33-of-226 to 10-of-90).
“I actually didn’t score the fight, but obviously a lot of people had me winning and a lot of people have her winning,” said Taylor, a 2012 Olympic gold medalist. “But nobody can deny that was a very, very close fight, and that’s why the rematch is happening again.”
Taylor, 34, and Persoon, 35, will fight for Taylor’s IBF, WBA, WBC and WBO lightweight titles.
DAZN will stream Taylor-Persoon II in the United States as part of the Dillian Whyte-Alexander Povetkin undercard Saturday, starting at 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT. Sky Sports Box Office will televise it in the United Kingdom as part of a pay-per-view telecast that’ll begin at 7 p.m. BST (£19.95).
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.