The big question going into today’s fight between Josh Taylor and Ryan Martin was whether or not Martin was really ready for a step up to world level. It turns out, he wasn’t.
Taylor (14-0, 12 KO) dominated the fight and stopped Martin (22-1, 12 KO) at 2:21 of the seventh round to advance to the semifinal round of the World Boxing Super Series 140-pound tournament.
Taylor looked every bit what he’s been sold to be, ripping Martin to the body and owning the ring, while Martin, frankly, looked like a prospect who didn’t belong at this level yet, and it’s a loss that will send him back to the drawing board with a lot of questions to answer.
Martin had a lot of trouble even pulling the trigger and throwing punches, especially early on, as trainer Abel Sanchez pleaded with him to get going. The American never loosened up or got into the fight, though.
That said, the stoppage is a bit controversial. Martin complained that the ending shot was one to the back of the head, and replays showed that it was, although it was completely accidental and just within the flow of the fight. Still, the fight was completely one-sided in Taylor’s favor, and wasn’t looking like it was going to get any more competitive.
Taylor moves on to face Ivan Baranchyk (19-0, 12 KO), who recently won the vacant IBF title against Anthony Yigit in their first round WBSS matchup. The other semifinal will see Regis Prograis face Kiryl Relikh.