By Elliot Foster
Josh Taylor and Regis Prograis will meet in the final of the World Boxing Super Series – and the stakes are now even bigger.
The pair progressed to the showpiece of the Muhammad Ali Trophy in recent weeks, with the latter stopping Kiryl Relikh inside six rounds and the former outpointing Ivan Baranchyk to become Scotland’s latest world champion.
Taylor got the better of the American-based Belarusian on Saturday, exclusively live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN Stateside, at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow to capture the red and gold IBF crown.
In the final of the WBSS, Prograis’ WBA ‘regular’ world title and WBC Diamond bauble were already set to be at stake.
But it was revealed in the post-fight press conference that the vacant Ring Magazine belt will also be on the line.
“To be a Ring champion, that’s so big,” said Prograis. “You get the Ring, you get the other belts and you get the Ali Trophy. That’s just, like, serious. People retire on the back of that sort of stuff, it’s history and legacy.
“This tournament is about the best fighting the best and that’s why I entered. Outside, you get the top guys not wanting to fight each other, but this tournament forces people to fight each other.
“I’m excited about the fight with Josh because we both had to fight really tough opponents to reach the final.”
Taylor insists Prograis will bring out the best in him.
“I switched off in there against Baranchyk because I got used to his patterns and it became so comfortable,” he said. “It will be a very different fight from the Baranchyk one. We’re both winners with a winning mentality but I just know I’m going to win that Ali Trophy and come out on top.
“I believe I’m the best in the division, the best in this tournament and I’m going to prove it by going on to unify the division.”