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Ireland’s boxing queen Taylor makes pro debut against Kopinska, Davies faces Scarpa in London

Lee Gormley | 26 November 2016

Katie Taylor v Karina Kopinska

  • Women’s super-featherweight fight
  • Saturday, November 26th
  • Scheduled for: 22:30 GMT
  • The SSE Arena, Wembley, London
  • Live on Sky Sports 2

Katie Taylor debut tips for fight night

Following an illustrious amateur career, Ireland’s boxing queen Katie Taylor takes her first step into the professional ranks this weekend when facing experienced Poland fighter Karina Kopinska for her awaited debut in London.

Katie Taylor debut tips point towards a strong showing for the Irishwoman in London.

Katie Taylor debut tips point towards a strong showing for the Irishwoman in London.

The Wicklow-born debutant became a national hero with her impressive feats as an amateur, incredibly securing no less than five world championship crowns and earning a Gold medal in the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

Four years on from her crowning glory in the English capital, Taylor will hope to start an equally admirable professional career with victory over Polish challenger Kopinska (7-14-3, 2 KOs) at the SSE Arena in Wembley.

The 30-year-old is already hailed for boosting the profile of women’s boxing in her homeland and abroad, but she will hope to raise it to new heights in the professional game and is 11/10 with Coral to begin with a points win this Saturday night.

Future bright for debutant Taylor

Taylor may only be preparing for her pro debut this weekend but she has already been pencilled in for high-profile bouts on the undercards of both Anthony Joshua in December and Gennady Golovkin in March next year at Madison Square Garden.

Although, the former Olympic champion isn’t looking too far ahead just yet, as she gets ready to tackle the threat of 27-year-old Kopinska on an exciting card in London.

Taylor and Kopinska face-off ahead of their battle in the main event of this London bill on Saturday night.

Taylor and Kopinska face-off ahead of their battle in the main event of this London bill on Saturday night.

“I just can’t wait to get in there, training has gone super over these last couple of months and I am so excited to get the ball rolling on Saturday with my pro debut,” stated the Irishwoman, who is 7/1 for a first-round knockout success.

“It’s the start of something really exciting for me and the start of great things ahead.”

With Taylor leaving the amateurs behind for the paid ranks, her arrival on the pro scene could be the catalyst for a huge boost in the women’s sport, with the likes of Nicola Adams, Savannah Marshall and Natasha Jonas all other female fighters that could help propel popularity and exposure.

“It’s a new journey, an exciting journey…”

Before looking ahead to massive fight nights at the famous Madison Square Garden among others, though, the five-time world amateur champion must strut her stuff against debut foe Kopinska, who is a 16/1 outsider to spring a surprise.

Taylor will have to adjust her style from the usual shorter amateur format ahead of her six two-minute rounds encounter this weekend at super-featherweight, but she has the experience and tools to get the job done in London.

Taylor enjoyed a highly decorated amateur career and will look to emulate that as a professional.

Taylor enjoyed a highly decorated amateur career and will look to emulate that as a professional.

The Wicklow native tasted disappointment at the most recent Olympics this past summer when losing out to Finland’s Mira Potkonen in the 60kg quarter-finals, though the defeat was one of several disputable decisions met by the Ireland team. Michael Conlan was the most notable victim of highly questionable officiating.

With that all now in the past, Ireland’s most decorated athlete is looking forward to breaking down barriers in her pro career after going through the toughest period of her time as an esteemed amateur.

“It is very good for me,” she continued. “It’s a new journey, an exciting journey and I am lucky to have a platform on Sky. I do believe that I will break down the barriers.”

Davies collides with Scarpa on card

As well as Taylor’s anticipated pro bow in London, unbeaten British light-welterweight Ohara Davies (13-0, 11 KOs) will aim to continue his climb through the division ladder with success over Andrea Scarpa (20-2, 10 KOs).

Davies will look to continue his impressive start to life in the paid ranks with victory over Scarpa.

Davies will look to continue his impressive start to life in the paid ranks with victory over Scarpa.

With the WBC silver title on the line in their scrap, Davies will enter proceedings at 13/2 to halt the bout inside rounds 1-3, while Italian opponent Scarpa is 5/2 to prevail.

Meanwhile, after Tommy Coyle was forced to withdraw, Martin Gethin (27-8-1, 11 KOs) will instead step in to face John Wayne Hibbert (17-4, 11 KOs), with Martin J Ward (15-0-2, 8 KOs) entering at 6/5 to outpoint Ronnie Clark (17-3-2, 10 KOs) in their meeting, while the latter is 7/1 to triumph.

At the SSE Arena, recent IBF flyweight title challenger Charlie Edwards (8-1, 3 KOs) and Felix Cash (3-0, 2 KOs) also feature, as well as a potentially thrilling clash between Carson Jones (39-11-3, 27 KOs) and Ben Hall (9-0, 2 KOs).

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