Josh Taylor: Barry McGuigan targets Jose Ramirez bout

By Keir MurrayBBC Scotland
Josh Taylor wants to fight at Easter Road or Edinburgh Castle after becoming a unified world champion.

Barry McGuigan has targeted a further unification fight for Josh Taylor after adding the WBA and Ring Magazine titles to his IBF super-lightweight crown.

The Scot put the first blemish on Regis Prograis's 24-bout record with a gutsy majority decision win over the American in London on Saturday.

Manager McGuigan wants a bout against WBO and WBC champion Jose Ramirez for a clean sweep at 140lb.

"We'd like to win those titles as well," he said.

"He is unified champion, Ring Magazine champion, Muhammad Ali champion, WBA and IBF champion after 16 fights.

"That is some achievement. What a talent he is. I'm so proud of him, so proud of my [trainer] son Shane."

In a captivating contest, which was also the final of the World Boxing Super Series, the momentum swung between the fighters. Prestonpans' Taylor emerged victorious against his dangerous opponent from Houston.

"What a talent Prograis is - very strong, good head movement, hard to hit," added McGuigan.

"But Josh is a great kid. He's a fighter's fighter. All the fighters love him. He's very exciting, great to watch, so adaptable, so multi talented.

"He beat Prograis at his own game and I think he's going to be a superstar."

'The fight can be here or in America'

McGuigan believes a fight against Californian Ramirez could take place next summer. Before that, his fighter must let his badly cut right eye heal.

"We'll take some time to get that over and done with and then we'd be happy to talk to [Top Rank boxing promoter] Bob Arum through Eddie Hearn [Matchroom Boxing].

"Eddie [Hearn] has been magnificent to us. We want to deal with him in the future - Eddie and his dad Barry. They can provide a deal in America.

"I believe we can have that unification fight either in America or over here.

"I would always prefer him to fight at home. Josh would love to fight at Easter Road or Edinburgh Castle but in reality that is going to be summer time so I'd like him to fight again maybe in late spring."

Taylor trained often in the States while with his Lochend Boxing Club coach Terry McCormack. And his Stateside connection strengthened in the early days of his pro career when he fought on the undercard of some Carl Frampton contests.

Only one of Taylor's last four opponents - Viktor Postol, Ryan Martin, Ivan Baranchyk and Prograis - had ever tasted defeat before facing him. That represents a total of 94 victories, with Postol's record the only one to register a loss.

"When I signed him. I knew he was special," McGuigan added.

"We moved very aggressively with him because we knew what he was capable of. We were number one for Jose Ramirez but we gave that up to fight in this tournament.

"He showed the courage and tenacity that only the great fighters show. We are very grateful to Kalle [Sauerland, promoter] and the WBSS for this opportunity.

"He dedicated the fight to James Murphy - Danielle, his fiancee, her dad died at a very young age, and of course I lost my gorgeous daughter two months ago to cancer."

Top Stories