Terri Harper: Boxing's Next Big Superstar?

The world of boxing continues to grow from strength to strength these days. Politics and promotional company disputes often prevent the best fights from happening but with a wide array of talent across the men and now women's fight game this means there is an event worth waiting up to watch roughly every fortnight. Katie Taylor has brought the media attention firmly on to the female boxing scene. There is, however, another name that looks increasingly likely to register as one of the top attractions in the near future and that name is Terri Harper.

On the 8th of February just gone, Kell Brook was making his return to the ring in the hope of one last world title shot before hanging up his gloves. His fight with Mark DeLuca was a mismatch to say the least but it took seven rounds for Kell to stop the durable American. Having watched the card in its entirety I have to say the stand out fight by far featured Eva Wahlstrom making a voluntary defence of her WBC world title belt against Britain's Terri Harper. 

Terri Harper holding the WBC belt after beating Eva Wahlstrom
Picture: skysports.com

Harper was fighting in just her 10th professional fight and the odds were stacked against the home fighter, in my mind anyway. Eva Wahlstrom was reaching on a bit in terms of age but was still a top level fighter whose only defeat came against the superstar that is Katie Taylor. The manner in which the fight unfolded would have deceived you had you not known which fighter was which. Harper was superior throughout the contest barring one or two big shots from Wahlstrom and won a wide points decision sending the crowd into raptures. The scores of 98-91 and two 99-90 from the judges was justified. The now former world champion from Finland also had a knockdown scored against her against Harper who is just 23 and has a limited amateur background despite three national titles. 

If you have time you can catch the full fight here courtesy of SkySportsBoxing 

The performance was one to remember and I will remember it for many of time to come. Harper could well carry the torch on when Katie decides to call it a day and she hasn't been messing around - her next fight is booked for April 24 - just two months after dethroning the long time champion.  

A potential super featherweight showdown with Delfine Persoon would draw huge attention but it is a massive step up even from the Wahlstrom fight. The WBC champion may feel rather confident about taking on Katie Taylor herself in time. I cannot see that fight ever happening but the sky is the limit in the women's fight game at the moment and both fighters are signed with Eddie Hearn. 

Have you started following women's boxing in more detail over the last couple of years? Is there another fighter who has caught your eye in recent times? 2020 will hopefully produce some of the super fights that the men's fight game can struggle to make on occasion - buckle up some huge fights could well be heading our way this year.