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Josh Taylor says he felt like “Joe Calzaghe against Jeff Lacy” in dominant win over Ryan Martin

Anthony Cocks

Australian-based boxing journalist Anthony Cocks has been covering the sport for over 15 years for various print and online publications. He refuses to believe that Roberto Duran ever lost to Tommy Hearns and says that Jeff Fenech would destroy Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee and Muhammad Ali on the same night.

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Scottish southpaw Josh ‘The Tartan Tornado’ Taylor 14-0 (12) says his dominant performance against American Ryan ‘Blue Chip’ Martin 22-1 (12) on Saturday night was reminiscent of WBO super middleweight champion Joe Calzaghe’s breakthrough performance against Jeff Lacy a dozen years ago.

The classy 27-year-old had it all over the import, outboxing him early and hurting him to the body before stopping him in seven increasingly one-sided rounds. The victory sees Taylor progress to the semi-final stage of the World Boxing Super Series junior welterweight tournament.

“I know it sounds daft but I was just so relaxed in there. At one point a thought came in to my head – ‘I feel like Joe Calzaghe against Jeff Lacy’ [2006 world title fight],” said Taylor after the fight to the Edinburgh Evening News.

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“That’s what I felt like. It was just something that flashed through my head and I had to switch back on again. I just felt so fluid and relaxed, everything was flowing, just like Calzaghe did that night.”

The victory for the talented Taylor puts him on the verge of a world title shot.

“I am almost there. A world title fight. This is what I’ve trained for these last ten years,” said Taylor. “This is the point I have dreamed about. There’s no-one going to beat me now. I don’t think there’s anyone who can live with me after that performance.

“This is the start of a new chapter for me. Everything so far was about getting to this point but this is me just getting started. I’ve been saying for years I am going to be the world champion. I’ve always believed it and now I am almost there.

“I believe there is more to come from me as well. This is just the beginning.”

Prior to the fight Taylor said that Martin, 25, had never shared the square circle with an opponent of his calibre. The gulf in class became apparent very early on in the fight.

“He never threw very much at first and I thought he was just sounding me out,” Taylor said. “I caught him with a good stiff jab and I could see him thinking, ‘oh s**t’. It was like he was surprised by my power as well as my speed.

“I caught him with a body shot and I could see him wincing. I knew I had him. He wasn’t enjoying the body shots and he looked lost in there.

“That was my best performance yet. Everything was flowing effortlessly. My speed, my power, distance control, all cylinders were firing perfectly. I was surprised how easy it was.

“I’m super confident now. I never got out of second gear. I felt I had a lot more to come.

“I probably could have taken him out earlier if I’d really put my foot on the gas but I felt I didn’t need to. I was boxing nicely and didn’t need to rush. It was so easy for me. The atmosphere in the Hydro was the best I’ve experienced. It was so loud, the reception I got was unbelievable.”

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