Josh Taylor edges out Jack Catterall in Glasgow to defend undisputed super-lightweight title

  • Tom Ward
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Josh Taylor is STILL the undisputed super-lightweight champion after edging past Jack Catterall on his own home turf on Saturday night at the OVO Hydro in Glasgow.

The Englishman was a huge underdog going into the fight in Scotland, but those thoughts quickly dissipated as the bout got underway.

Catterall got off to a much faster start than people had been expecting, clearly winning the first couple of rounds as he established an early lead on the scorecards.

However, Taylor started working his way back into it in the third as he began to go to work to the body.

Catterall was notably nimble and light on his feet, dancing his way around the ring to evade thrown by his slightly-taller opponent.

He seemed to get the better of most of the exchanges and continued to deliver a number of eye-catching shots throughout the night.

Catterall backed Taylor up against the ropes in round six, connecting with a couple of thumping left hands in the process.

But few could have predicted what would happen next.

Boxing – World Junior Welterweight Championship Title – Josh Taylor v Jack Catterall – The OVO Hydro, Glasgow, Scotland, Britain – February 26, 2022 Josh Taylor celebrates winning his fight against Jack Catterall Action Images via Reuters/Lee Smith

Catterall saw an opportunity and took it, dropping Taylor with a short left in the eighth round to stun the home crowd.

The Scotsman looked just as surprised as everyone else as he was forced to take the eight count for the first time in his career.

But Taylor got right back to his feet before holding on to Catterall for dear life as he tried to defuse the momentum.

From his corner, coach Ben Davison roared words of encouragement, perhaps sensing the fight starting to slip away from them.

Both fighters also ended up being deducted a point each as tensions threatened to boil over, with the referee dishing out verbal warnings like there was no tomorrow.

Boxing – World Junior Welterweight Championship Title – Josh Taylor v Jack Catterall – The OVO Hydro, Glasgow, Scotland, Britain – February 26, 2022 Josh Taylor during his fight against Jack Catterall Action Images via Reuters/Lee Smith

No one had given Catterall a chance to defeat Taylor and become the undisputed super-lightweight champion of the world.

But Catterall – nicknamed El Gato – seemed to be on the verge of a stunning upset.

However, Taylor won the fight via split decision, winning with scores of 114-111, 113-112 and 112-113.

“I don’t think there is any need for a rematch,” Taylor said in his post-fight interview.

“I won in the second half of the fight. I took over and bossed him.

Boxing – World Junior Welterweight Championship Title – Josh Taylor v Jack Catterall – The OVO Hydro, Glasgow, Scotland, Britain – February 26, 2022 Josh Taylor in action against Jack Catterall Action Images via Reuters/Lee Smith

“I 100 per cent [believed I had done enough to win]. Thought I started a little slow, bit once I got into my rhythm and timing and started catching him with the bigger shots.

“He was trying trying to spoil a lot, going down an awful lot, a lot of clashing of heads.

“He caught me with a couple of good shots, I’m not going to lie. It wasn’t my best performance, I put a lot of pressure on myself this couple of weeks, it being my homecoming, first time in three years, first time since lockdown back at home.

“I put a lot of pressure on myself, being the heavy favourite and it showed in the first half of the fight.

“But once I got in my rhythm, I started catching him with the bigger shots. It wasn’t my best performance but I believe I got the win 100 per cent. But Jack did very well.”

Boxing – World Junior Welterweight Championship Title – Josh Taylor v Jack Catterall – The OVO Hydro, Glasgow, Scotland, Britain – February 26, 2022 Jack Catterall in action against Josh Taylor Action Images via Reuters/Lee Smith

Many however disagreed with the decision as they felt Catterall had done enough to deserve the victory.

Reacting to the verdict, Spencer Oliver exclusively told GIVEMESPORT: “That was the worst decision I’ve ever seen in my life.

“That has left a poor taste in my mouth. It’s a disgrace. It is a f****** disgrace.

“I had Catterall up by five rounds.”

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