Nicola Adams retains WBO flyweight title in split decision draw

Nicola Adams
This was the first time female boxers had fought at the Royal Albert Hall

Two-time Olympic champion Nicola Adams retained her WBO world flyweight title after an unconvincing split decision draw against Mexican challenger Maria Salinas at the Royal Albert Hall.

The British boxer was lacklustre in what was her first fight since last October, with the judges scoring it 96-94 Salinas, 97-93 Adams, 95-95 draw.

"I was a bit ring rusty - I haven't boxed in a year, so it wasn't my best performance," Adams said.

"If she wants a rematch I'll go again."

Adams, 36, started well but never really looked truly comfortable and instead Salinas grew in confidence after being second best for the first three rounds.

The announcement of the judges' scores was met with boos, with some of the crowd expressing their dissatisfaction with Adams' display.

"Now I've got this under my belt it's time to go again," added Adams.

"I put in as much work as I could and I came away with the belt. I'd love to be able to go to Leeds with my title for a rematch - I'll have to sit down with my coaches and work out what we do."

Olympic return for Adams 'doubtful'

Adams recently hinted at a return to the amateur ranks to enable her to take part in a third Olympic Games. She posted a cryptic video on social media of the Tokyo 2020 gold medal, commenting: "I wonder how this would look on my mantelpiece."

That prompted GB Boxing performance director Rob McCracken to say he would be "willing to listen" if she wanted to aim for a third successive gold medal.

But speaking after Friday's fight, Adams' promoter Frank Warren sought to end talk of an Olympic return.

"I don't think she'll go to the Olympics," he said. "She would need to go through qualifiers and that's doubtful. She is a pro now and that's how things are.

"She needs to build a fanbase and this is the start of that."

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