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Katie Taylor expecting tough fight from Jennifer Han

Taylor and Han meet for Taylor’s undisputed championship on Saturday in Leeds.

Photo by Richard Sellers/PA Images via Getty Images
Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

Undisputed lightweight champion Katie Taylor returns to the ring Saturday as part of the Lara-Warrington 2 card on DAZN from Leeds, England, where she’ll face Jennifer Han with all four of Taylor’s belts at stake.

Taylor (18-0, 6 KO) fully unified the division in 2019 with a disputed decision win over Delfine Persoon, and has gone on to solidify her claim — and arguably a claim as the best pound-for-pound women’s boxer in the world — with three successful defenses, including a rematch win over Persoon in 2020.

The 38-year-old Han (18-3-1, 1 KO) is a mandatory challenger who hasn’t lost since 2014, winning eight straight fights, and held the IBF featherweight title from 2015-18. But she’s fought just once since 2018, too, and being honest, isn’t expected to be a major challenge for Taylor.

But that’s for pundits and fans and whatnot to say. Taylor says she’ll do what she always does: Get ready to be tested by a hungry challenger.

“I’m expecting the toughest fight from Jennifer. She has a lot of amateur experience and she’s a very technical fighter,” Taylor said. “She was my (mandatory challenger) as well, so I had to take the fight. These girls have stepped up, they’ve boxed beyond themselves, they have raised their game against me. I’m expecting a very, very tough fight and I’m going to be prepared like I have been for every single fight I’ve had over the last few years.

“She is a fighter that believes in herself. This fight is going to bring the best out of the both of us. I love the fact that she’s stepping into the ring confident, like I am, as well. I don’t really take much notice of what other fighters say, I just focus on my own performance and my own preparation. We’re going to be stepping into the ring 100% prepared. The only words that matter are, ‘And still.’ Training is going well. I feel good and sharp. I can’t wait to step in again and get another great victory.”

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