Jennifer Han looks to shock the world in title fight against Katie Taylor

Boxing

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Jennifer Han is England bound. ‘El Paso’s Sweetheart’ set for her world title fight on Saturday against Katie Taylor, ESPN’s top ranked pound-for-pound female fighter in the world.

Han (18-3-1, 1 KO) represents Taylor’s (18-0, 6 KOs) IBF mandatory challenger. The fight will take place in Leeds, England, at Headingley Stadium, an outdoor rugby and cricket venue that can house up to 21,000 fans. The fight will be the co-main event along with the eagerly awaited rematch between Josh Warrington and Mauricio Lara.

Taylor, who is the undisputed world lightweight champion. She will be defending her 18-fight unbeaten record against Han, who is unbeaten in her last eight fights dating back to 2014 when she lost to Ji-Hye Woo.

“[Katie Taylor] is probably the most decorated pound-for-pound female fighter of this generation,” said Han. “I’m so honored to have this opportunity to fight her, but I’m going to show my class, my experience and my skills. I hope she highly underestimates me.”

Han, 38, a six-time national amateur champion, will be vying for Taylor’s WBC, WBA, IBF, WBO and Ring Magazine titles. She won the vacant IBF featherweight world title in September of 2015, and went on to make four successful title defenses of the belt, most recently against Lizbeth Crespo in February 2018 at the Don Haskins Center. Han’s last fight came in February of 2020, a unanimous decision win against Jeri Sitzes inside the El Paso County Coliseum.

‘El Paso’s Sweetheart’ is considered a big underdog in this bout, but that doesn’t phase her one bit.

“It’s not just about who’s the favorite,” said Han. “It’s about who dominates, who scores, who has ring showmanship and who’s going to be the champion.”

It has been a busy couple of years for Han, most notably outside of the ring. She has given birth to two baby boys, most recently in February. Being a mom has taken precedent in her life and she fully expected to walk away from the sport, that is until her trainer, Louie Burke, convinced her she still has what it takes to be a world champ.

“Jennifer has that about her — she has that strong mentality and a strong minded person,” said Burke. “She doesn’t falter. She thrives off of it. She lives off the electrcity and being the underdog makes her work harder.”

It’s the biggest fight of Han’s career — “the fight of a lifetime,” as she put it. With nothing to lose and everything to gain, expect the challenger to come out swinging.

September’s bout will air exclusively on DAZN’s streaming service. Han is expected to enter the ring in Leeds at 2 p.m. MT.

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