Not long after she had dropped and stopped the previously undefeated Rose Volante in Philadelphia, dispossessing her of the WBO lightweight title in the process, Katie Taylor received a message from the 36-year-old Brazilian. March 15 was a hard, hard night for Volante, who found out the difference between beating up other Brazilians on small-hall shows in her homeland and taking on arguably the finest female fighter to have ever lived.
But she also learned first hand exactly how the Olympic 2012 gold medalist has drastically changed the women’s game on an economic basis. It is believed that Volante was paid more to fight Taylor than she had earned in all of her 14 previous professional fights combined.
When the fighting pride of Bray is in town, there is life-changing money on offer for both participants no matter how one-sided the encounter may be. Defeat to Taylor, which came 20 seconds before the end of round nine, was painful for Volante but after returning to south America on St Patrick’s Day, the Sao Paulo native could take stock of a more than worthwhile endeavour.
“I actually got a message from Rose Volante after the fight,” Taylor said.
Saying she was able to buy her mother a house in Brazil with the money she made from fighting me. That’s incredible for me. She’s set her parents up for life now through that fight. That’s amazing.
And it’s not just Volante. WBC champion Delphine Persoon, who Taylor faces at Madison Square Garden here in New York on Saturday, will also bank by far the biggest payday of her career as a result of her part in a contest with the biggest draw in women’s boxing. Backed by the mega-rich streaming service DAZN, Taylor’s promoter Eddie Hearn has been able to ensure that the five-time world amateur champion is rewarded for her dedication to the sport.
“I definitely didn’t expect to be making this much money,” she admitted. “I probably shouldn’t be saying that. It’s life-changing money.”
Despite that, the fighting pride of Bray is no more extravagant than she’s ever been. The Netflix documentary released about her life earlier this year depicts an athlete with little or no regard for excess, not that Taylor would know.
“I haven’t even watched the film yet,” she admitted with a shrug. Maybe I’ll watch it one day but for the time being I’m not planning on watching. I know the story of my own life anyway. I don’t feel like I need to sit down and watch it.
I’m a very quiet and private person and I don’t open up a lot to people so only my family and close friends really know me.
How, then, did she end up being the subject of a feature film?
“I was kind of talked into it,” she said. “But to be honest the first few weeks I didn’t really know I was doing a documentary. I was like ‘who’s this guy in my dressing room all the time?’
“But we did it because it’s great to have that influence on people, to try and inspire the next generation and I hope I’m able to do that and that the documentary does that too.
“It wasn’t actually that hard at all because Ross Whittaker, who produced it, I have known for a long time now and he’s someone I could really trust actually. I’d seen a few of his documentaries before and the trust was already there before we started. It made it very easy for me.
“When he was around me it was very non-intrusive, half the time I didn’t even know the camera was there which was perfect. I wouldn’t have been able to do it with anybody else.”