On Saturday we got the chance to see the best and worst in female boxing. Late in the day Katie Taylor and Delfine Persoon put on a sensational bout in the UK. A few hours before that we saw Kazakh fighter Firuza Sharipova (11-1, 6) defeat the hapless Happy Daudi (8-7-1, 4) in Kazan, in a show case of how bad female boxing can be.
For those who missed the bout we've broken down contest in our latest Take Aways article.
1-Happy Daudi was terrible
The Tanzanian fighter really didn't look like she belonged in the ring at all. Physically she looked like she was carrying excess weight and was unfit but that was only one of her issues. The more serious issue was her punching technique, it would be a compliment to say it was terrible. She was falling short with her punches, throwing them miles out of range, and often flailing so badly off balance that it was amazing Sharipova wasn't countering her. Sadly for Daudi her defense was hardly better than her defense and the only really notable trait was her ability to take shots from Sharipova. Given how bad she was we can only wonder about the complete ineptitude of the fighters she has beaten.
2-Sharipova needs to avoid every top fighter for the foreseeable future
Although Daudi was absolutely dreadful the fight also showed how poor Sharipova was. The Kazakh, who had been out of the ring for over a year, looked a million miles away from the top fighters between 130lbs and 140lbs. In recent weeks we've seen the likes of Katie Taylor, Jessica McCaskill, Delfine Persoon, Mikaela Mayer, Terry Harper and Natasha Jonas in action. On the back of this, and their recent fights, they would all deal with Sharipova very easily. She does some things nicely but she really slaps with her right hand, gets little power in her body shots, lacks power, and took 5 rounds to make a human punch quit. This was an easy win for Sharipova, but not an impressive performance, and not one which will strike fear into any top fight fighter in, or around, her weight class.
3-Sharipova needs to concentrate on her boxing career
On the subject of Sharipova she really does need to focus on her career if she wants to make her name in the sport. In Kazakhstan she seems to have fans, but also seems to open herself up to trolling and abuse from the media. She seems to be someone who gets a lot of attention for non-boxing reasons and it feels more like she's a media creation, who like to feature her for her looks, than a potential boxing world champion. Issues out side of the ring haven't helped her career grow and she had a lot of work to do to be a star in the ring. She's a million miles from the top fighters but bouts at this level don't help her either. Bout like this one continue to make her look like a joke. Her team need to get her developmental fights, she needs to learn things from her bouts, and need to work on her punching technique and her defense. Daudi was never going to be good enough to make her sharpen up. Bouts like this will do more harm than good for the Kazakh, who needs to be tested. With that said the previously planned rematch with Sofya Ochigava should be the target for her next outing.
4-The IBA are a joke!
We all want to laugh at the WBA and the WBC for their weird rankings, bad decision making and creation of extra titles. They are supposed to be taken seriously and don't.The IBA however just proved, once again, they were a joke. They actually allowed this farce to be for their "world" title. Neither fighter should have been anywhere close to a world title fight, even for a body seen as badly as the IBA. For these "smaller" bodies to get some respect they need to stop sanctioning bouts like this. For those who want to know just how stupid this bout was from a title perspective, this was the first IBA Light Welterweight title bout in 7 years! The belt's only previous champion was the legendary Holly Holm. This bout really does crap on what legacy the belt once head.
5-Women's boxing will struggle for respect whilst we still get this level of fight
Women's boxing has been on a roll recently and we've had some incredible bouts between female fighters at the elite level of the sport. We know that the women can bring it, and can give us bouts that deserve the limelight. Sadly whilst we are getting some amazing bouts we are still getting bouts like this one. Thankfully very few fans have seen this bout, but for us the worry is that bouts like this can be used as an example of how women's boxing is. There are the top women, who are brilliant, but there is a lack of them. Then we have too many fights like this, showing there is a very steep drop off between the best in the sport and the rest.
Thinking Out East
With this site being pretty successful so far we've decided to open up about our own views and start what could be considered effectively an editorial style opinion column dubbed "Thinking Out East" (T.O.E).