KATIE Taylor has revealed that she received a surprise offer in the dressing room prior to her World Championship bout with Argentine Anahi Esther Sanchez on Saturday night when she met Hollywood star Colin Farrell for the first time and he proposed that he walk her to the ring.
Farrell was one of the more notable audience members of the 80,000 who had packed into the Principality Stadium in Cardiff for the headline fight between Englishman Anthony Joshua and Cameroonian-French fighter Carlos Takam. The Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them star waited backstage with his girlfriend as Katie Tylor warmed up, before greeting her in the dressing-room and wishing her luck.
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According to Taylor’s manager Brian Peters; “It was actually really funny. Katie just looked at Colin and said, ‘Thanks a million, but just sit down with your girlfriend and enjoy your night’. Colin was a little nervous at the prospect himself, to be honest. He’s normally used to being the star of the show, but he was in an arena packed with 80,000 people. It’s become somewhat of a tradition for a personality to walk out a fighter, but Katie just wasn’t interested – she was just completely focused on the fight ahead. It was really great for Colin to come down. He drove three hours from London to watch the fight and came back down afterward to congratulate her.”
Farrell couldn’t have been more complimentary of the 31-year-old Bray woman after the fight, putting her in the same bracket as some of Ireland’s greatest sporting icons; “She was already a national hero – she probably would be in any country in the world. Obviously for ourselves, an island country with a population of just over 4 million, but this goes into England because this is a sporting achievement that goes beyond the boundaries of our country and goes into the international world.
“What she’s achieved is like what McGregor has achieved, or McGuigan or Steve Collins have achieved. Like them, she is more than a national hero. It’s just incredible.”
Taylor’s coach added that the boxer would now focus on unifying her belts and had ambitions to fight some of the world’s most iconic boxers. With that in mind, there may be another opportunity for Farrell to walk Taylor to the ring in future.