NEW YORK – The rematch is set and Katie Taylor will finally have her first pro fight in her country.
Taylor will face undisputed featherweight champion Amanda Serrano on May 20th in a repeat of their epic match from last April at Madison Square Garden. Taylor won this fight via split decision to retain her undisputed lightweight title.
The rematch will take place in Dublin, Ireland where the two will once again fight for Taylor’s lightweight belts. The location was not disclosed, but 82,000-seat Croke Park and 13,000-seat 3Arena were mentioned as possibilities.
After Serrano defeated Erika Cruz by unanimous decision Saturday night, Taylor joined her in the ring to announce the fight.
“This is more than a dream come true – my debut in Ireland against Amanda Serrano, ‘The Real Deal’ Amanda Serrano,” said Taylor. “This is incredible and as I said, the last fight was epic and I expect nothing less for the next one.”
Serrano’s trainer Jordan Maldonado said a rematch against Taylor in Ireland was something that was always part of the discussions — it was even brought up at the post-Taylor-Serrano I post-fight press conference — and Maldonado said they only wanted the rematch in make Ireland.
They said they understood how important this was to Taylor.
“She fought us here in New York. We’re Puerto Ricans, but this is basically our home,” Maldonado said. “One of the things I said is that I would only take the Katie Taylor fight if it was in Ireland.
“She deserves it.”
Serrano, who has won titles in seven divisions, told ESPN in December and January that the only fight she would gain weight for was a rematch against Taylor.
“A lot of people want to see the fight and I think it solidifies women’s boxing,” Serrano told ESPN in December. “I think it sets the exclamation point and shows that we are here and we will continue to face challenges.”
The first Serrano-Taylor fight was a flash point for women’s boxing. The first boxers to headline Madison Square Garden, Taylor and Serrano, sold out in one of the sport’s most iconic arenas. They delivered a close, competitive fight that was named Fight of the Year by multiple publications and Moment of the Year by many others.
The fight helped further advance the careers of Taylor, 36, and Serrano, 34, two of the top three pound-for-pound fighters in the world, along with undisputed middleweight champion Claressa Shields.
“It hit me the next day when I realized that the people watching the fight weren’t just boxing fans, they were celebrities outside of boxing who knew who we were and what we were doing,” Serrano said. “Write history. It was just everything, the week leading up to the fight, the promotion, how Madison Square Garden promoted the fight, it was just so amazing.”
Since the Serrano fight, Taylor (22-0, 6 KOs) beat Karen Carabajal in October. Serrano (44-2-1, 30 KOs) defeated Sarah Mahfoud in September to win the IBF featherweight title, and Saturday’s win over Cruz made her the undisputed featherweight champion.
Maldonado and Serrano said they will start real battle camp for Taylor in mid-March and do light training until then.