Matchbook’s resident Boxing tipster Ryan Cahill breaks down this weekend’s two highly-anticipated bouts from either side of the Atlantic as Ireland’s Katie Taylor takes on the UK’s Chantelle Cameron & Devin Haney faces Vasyl Lomachenko in a blockbuster in Las Vegas.
It is a historic event in Irish sporting history on Saturday as arguably Ireland’s greatest-ever sportsperson Katie Taylor returns home to contest her first-ever pro bout on Irish soil.
It will be a seismic occasion in Dublin’s 3 Arena this weekend, with tickets selling out in a matter of minutes. Showing an appetite for events like this on the Island.
Taylor, however, is not faced with a lay-up for the big occasion, opposite her is undefeated IBF, WBA, WBC & WBO Super-Lightweight champion Chantelle Cameron.
Northampton’s Cameron (17-0, 8KO’s) will enter the ring on Saturday as the underdog for the first time in her career, despite the challenger moving up in weight.
Cameron was last seen boxing to a decision win against the American Jessica McCaskill in a fight where she started quickly but looked laboured towards the end.
Taylor (22-0, 6 KO’s) enters a general 1.67 shot after a workmanlike performance against Karen Carabajal last October, having previously been in an all-time classic against Amanda Serrano, who Taylor was originally scheduled to fight this weekend.
Breaking down the fight, Taylor historically struggles with size and physicality, a blueprint Belgian Delfine Persoon had success with earlier in Taylor’s career, Serrano also had success in the middle rounds when being the more physical aggressor.
You would assume Cameron would have the physical edge on Taylor at 140, although I do not think that is the case.
Cameron herself is not big for the weight, and physicality is not her game. She comes forward and likes to pressure, but in a technical way, she won’t overwhelm Taylor with her size.
In a pure boxing match, there is only one winner. And that is Bray’s 2012 Gold Medalist and Undisputed Lightweight World Champion, Taylor.
Taylor is an elite boxer, her ability to get in and out of range and land flurries of shots while doing so is something not many can deal with. Cameron, in my opinion, will not be an exception.
Taylor of course is in the twilight of her career, but with a raucous Irish crowd behind her expect her to have one more big night in her.
From a betting perspective, this seems destined to see all 10 rounds. It would take a mammoth effort for Cameron to get a decision away from home against the Irish superstar. You would argue she would likely need to decisively win 7/8 rounds to have a chance on the cards.
Give me the hometown hero and superior boxer by decision on Saturday night, currently trading around 1.83 at time of writing.
Lomachenko to turn back time?
From one massive fight to another as all roads lead to Las Vegas come early hours Sunday morning as undisputed Lightweight Champ Devin “The Dream” Haney takes on Ukrainian superstar Vasyl Lomachenko.
Haney (29-0, 15 KO’s) enters having convincingly done the double over Aussie George Kambosos. The straight-talking American is a budding superstar and a win over Lomachenko in the biggest fight of his career to date on Saturday night can catapult him there.
Lomachenko (17-2, 11KO’s) has been there and done it, 2008 Gold Medalist, 2012 Gold Medalist, 3 weight World Champion. The fighting pride of Ukraine will go down in history as an all-time great, regardless of what happens on Saturday night.
Now toward the back-end of his career, you would think it is the perfect time for Haney to catch him cold.
Haney is a superb boxer and fantastic athlete, “The Dream” has a jab which is exactly as his nickname states and he utilises it tremendously well, as showcased in both Kambosos fights.
This isn’t George Kambosos though, this is Vasyl Lomachenko, the man dubbed “The Matrix” for his ability to make it look like time has stood still with his flawless footwork and blistering speed.
I would have little doubt the Lomachenko of 5 years ago would deal with Haney in style. However, time catches up with us all, and in recent years Lomachenko looks a step slower.
A small lightweight, Lomachenko has notably struggled with size in the Teofimo Lopez fight and speed in the Jamiane Ortiz bout. Coming on strong down the stretch in both though, his ability to go a hard 12 is still unquestionable.
Haney is a very skinny price to pick up his biggest win to date, a consensus 1.4 shot. I just can’t possibly get to 71.4% implied for Haney here despite my eyes telling me they are fighters trending in different directions.
Lomachenko did look like his old self in parts of the second half of the fight against underrated Jamaine Ortiz, and if he can summon up his old self for this one, he has a hell of a chance.
Haney has vulnerabilities, as we saw in flashes against Jorge Linares & JoJo Diaz respectively.
Like Taylor/Cameron this fight screams distance to me, neither is a power puncher and stoppages for both tend to come through accumulation.
At a price of 4.5, a Lomachenko decision makes plenty of appeal, and I am more than willing to put my faith in the Ukrainian turning back time.
- Katie Taylor by Dec/Tech Dec @ 1.83
- Vasyl Lomachenko by Dec/Tech Dec @ 4.5
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