Boxing Fight: Savannah Marshall is trying to buy “additional time,” according to Claressa Shields, since the Brit isn’t ready for their undisputed middleweight world title fight in September, according to promoter Ben Shalom.
The mega-fight between WBA, WBC, and IBF middleweight champion Shields and WBO champion Marshall was supposed to take place in late July, but due to Marshall’s arm surgery, it will instead take place in early September.
While Marshall confirmed last week that her physicians had given Shields’ reps details of the surgery, the American has questioned the severity of the procedure her opponent required.
“It’s all mind games and it’s extra time,” Shields told Sky Sports News. “Her and her trainer have realised that it is not what they thought it was going to be.
“I’m not going to let Savannah steamroll me, she’s not going to knock me out. She’s going to have to be in great shape, she’s going to have to be mentally tough and she’s going to have to endure a lot of hard punches, body shots, headshots and I don’t think she’s ready for that right now.”
While Shalom claims that there are a few days available in early September, Shields insists that if the fight isn’t held on the first weekend of the month, she will have to withdraw owing to her commitments to compete in mixed martial arts later in the year.
“If it doesn’t happen by September 3,” Shield stated, “Savannah Marshall will have to find someone else to play with.” “That’s it.
“Because I’ve permitted it to be put out to September, she’ll have ample time to recover and prepare from any ailment she has, and we’ll be able to get back to fighting.
“She says he’s going to knock me out in two rounds, so it shouldn’t take too long.”
‘I’m always playing mind games
Shalom, who represents both fighters, is optimistic that the fight will take place but admits that their “true hatred” for one another makes his job more difficult.
Shalom told Sky Sports News, “It’s exciting because they’re both playing with one other.” “There are always mind games going on.
“Yes, Savannah did have an injury. It had to be delayed. Claressa’s obviously not taken it well, Savannah doesn’t like her reaction. But the fight now will happen in early September.
“It’s hotting up and that’s what we wanted. We know those two don’t like each other and now it’s becoming harder and harder to get there because of that hate.”
Katie Taylor defeated Amanda Serrano in a dramatic April bout at Madison Square Garden, which was the first time a women’s boxing event was held there.
Shalom believes that the long-running rivalry between Shields and Marshall, who clashed in the amateurs ten years ago and saw the Brit win, has the potential to produce an equally spectacular event.
“It is a genuine thing and I think it’s bugged Claressa since the amateur days. It’s going on and she feels like she’s the biggest star in boxing and she’s having to wait for Savannah Marshall, and she can’t quite comprehend that, and that’s why it’s brewing perfectly.