The weekend past seen the biggest Female boxing match in the sports history, recognized by Ring magazine who presented Shields with the first ever female divisional championship belt.
Claressa ‘T-REX’ Shields 9(2)-0-0 comes into this fight as the favorite despite the 2 time Olympic gold medalist giving up 3 inches in height to Christina Hammer 24(11)-1-0. Shields took the win by unanimous decision with all 3 judges scoring the fight 98-92.
Hammer won the first round with Shields winning the reminder rounds and regarding the first round Shields said “I was just calculating: what is her jab like, how fast is she? I was just calculating in the first round and after that I started picking her apart. I knew I could hurt her.”
Hammer for the first time seen herself as the underdog and without the home advantage which was clearly evident come the ninth round when the crowd was chanting “T-REX!” Hammer recognized this would happen during her pre fight build-up “I know that it’s a risk to come from Germany to the U.S. to fight Shields. But I have done everything to bring it to her and break her down round-by-round. I want to show the people who the real champion is. A real champion fights everyone, all over the world.” After the fight Hammer had this to say “I didn’t fight very good or fast. That’s boxing, anything can happen. I wanted this fight. She won, respect to her. She’s a tough, strong woman and that’s all I can say.” Hammer added: “She’s fast, she comes forward. She has fast hands. I couldn’t land my jab as good as I expected. That’s boxing. I’ll come back and I’ll be back stronger.”
A delighted Shields said “I am the greatest woman of all time. She didn’t win a round. I almost knocked her ass out. I swear I feel like I’m dreaming right now.” recalling how the fight went Shields said “I thought I finished her in round eight. I thought the fight should have been stopped. She was holding onto me. I just told myself: ‘Stay cool, stay cool.’ I was trying to get the perfect punch to get her out of there.”
Before the interviewer could ask who she wanted to face next Shields said “I cannot wait to see the next super fight. Right now I’m the undisputed (middleweight) champ. Give me Cecilia Brækhus at 154. That’s who I want next. Either her or Savannah Marshall.” In my opinion Brækhus will not take this fight as the weight difference is too great, but a fight with Marshall is going to be a more long term rivalry. Marshall is the only person to have beat Shields and that was in an amateur fight in 2012. These two will be kept separated for a few years to build up Marshall’s profile before a big money fight can be arranged.
Asked about the future of Women’s boxing Shields said “Women’s boxing, we’re on fire.” And with that statement I could not agree more.
On the undercard: Russia’s Elena Gradinar 9(2)-1-0 was beat by Argentina’s Brenda Karen Carabajal 16(9)-4-1 for the interim IBF World female Featherweight title. Having gone the distance the judges give the win to Carabajal by way of unanimous decision 94-96, 93-97, and 93-97.
On Friday night Segolene Lefebvre 12(1)-0-0 won by unanimous decision against Laura Soledad Griffa 18(1)-3-0 for the IBO and WBF world Female Super Bantamweight titles in the Salle Gayant, Douai, Nord, France.
In the Montreal Casino, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, Marie Eve Dicaire 15(0)-0-0 successfully defended her IBF World Female Super welterweight title against Sweden’s Mikaela Lauren 31(13)-6(2)-0. This fight was arranged at short notice on the back of Dicaire’s previous fight being cancelled by the Quebec athletic commission after it was revealed during a medical examination that her opponent Linda Tejada was completely blind in one eye. Dicaire won by unanimous decision 98-92, 99-91 and 97-93.
Also on Saturday, Mexico played host to the WBO World Female flyweight title fight between Arely Mucino 28(10)-3(1)-2 and Venezuela’s Yairineth Altuve 10(10)-3-0. Mucino won this bout by unanimous decision.