With Claressa Shields vs Christina Hammer this weekend, TSL explores the top women’s matches of all time.
Saturday, April 13, undefeated middleweight world champions Claressa Shields and Christina Hammer will meet head to head. Live on SHOWTIME, the women’s undisputed 160-pound world champion will be crowned.
The blockbuster unification fight will be live from Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, N.J. and is not just a huge women’s match, but a huge boxing bout period.
Over the course of history, women’s boxing has had many highs and lows. Here are TSL’s Top 5 biggest matches in women’s boxing history.
5. Ann Wolfe vs. Vonda Ward (2004)
Many consider Ann Wolfe to be the best fighter as well as the hardest puncher in female boxing history. When she won the IBA world light heavyweight title on May 8th, 2004, she was officially holding a total of three world titles in three different weight divisions all at the same time, a record she shares with the great Henry Armstrong.
Wolfe gained the IBA world Light Heavyweight championship, knocking out undefeated champion and former NCAA basketball star Vonda Ward at one minute and eight seconds of the first round. Ward had a neck concussion after hitting the canvas with her neck when she fell and was taken to the hospital in serious condition. She eventually recovered.
This bout was nationally televised from Biloxi, Mississippi and television commentators called it “the best knockout punch … in a women boxing match”.
4. Regina Halmich vs. Ria Ramnarine (2006)
The Ring Magazine named her the second best female boxer of all time in 2016, and is considered by many sports critics as one of the most successful female boxers ever. Her professional debut fight—in which she won—happened in Karlsruhe, Germany back in 1994, in a bout against Fienee Klee.
On 9 September 2006 Halmich won her 53rd pro fight, defeating Ria Ramnarine of Trinidad and Tobago by TKO in the sixth round. From there, Halmich went on to become WIBF junior flyweight, flyweight, and super flyweight world champion. Halmich announced her retirement after her farewell fight on 30 November 2007, in which she beat Hagar Finer of Israel by majority decision (96–94, 97–94, 95–95).
3. Laila Ali vs. Jacqui Frazier-Lyde (2001)
Ali began boxing when she was 18 years old and credits her interest after watching a Christy Martin fight. Ali captured eight wins in a row and many boxing fans expressed a desire to see her square off in a boxing ring with George Foreman’s daughter, Freeda Foreman or Joe Frazier’s daughter, Jackie Frazier-Lyde.
On June 8, 2001, Ali and Frazier finally met. The fight was nicknamed Ali/Frazier IV in a nod to their fathers’ famous fight trilogy. Ali won by a majority judges’ decision in eight rounds.
This match by Ali and Frazier was the first main-event pay-per-view match between two women.
2. Cecilia Braekhus vs. Ivana Habazin (2014)
Brækhus is a Norwegian former kickboxer and in boxing, she has reigned as the undisputed female welterweight champion since 2014. After defeating Croatian Ivana Habazin, Brækhus became the first Norwegian and the first woman to hold all major world championship belts in her weight division (welterweight) in boxing history.
She is also the first woman in any weight class to hold the WBA, WBC, IBF, and WBO titles simultaneously. Braekhus is also one of only five boxers in history, female or male, to hold all four titles simultaneously, along with Bernard Hopkins(2004–2005), Jermain Taylor (2005), Terence Crawford (2017), and Oleksandr Usyk (2018).
1. Amanda Serrano vs. Eva Voraberger (2019)
Amanda Serrano is a Puerto Rican professional boxer and mixed martial artist from Brooklyn, NY. She is the only boxer to win recognized world titles in seven weight classes, as well as the first woman and Puerto Rican to win world titles in five, six and seven different weight classes.
In January 2019, Serrano faced Eva Voraberger for the vacant WBO super flyweight title where she scored a first-round TKO. The win made her a champion in seven weight classes (septuple champion) along with hallowed peers, Manny Pacquiao, and Hector “Macho Camacho.