Terri Harper Takes Out Katharina Thanderz
Terri Harper shocked many boxing pundits when she defeated long-reigning WBC junior lightweight champion Eva Whalstrom in February. At that point, she was heralded as the best female junior lightweight in the world.
However six months later, she turned in a terrible performance but in a very exciting match-up against the perceived over-matched Natasha Jonas. The fight was declared a draw but many thought Jonas should have been crowned the new WBC champion.
Norway’s Katharina Thanderz has been a sleeper in for over two-years now. She has defeated every opponent she has faced in different areas of the Europe. The most notable being Danila Ramos and Rachel Ball, although, the two are not major contenders in the division. This has spawned criticism in the form of not fighting tough enough opponents during her climb up the rankings.
TOO BIG & TOO SMART
Harper showed the difference in pedigree early. She is physically bigger and she took full advantage of that throughout the fight. Although Thanderz had the slight reach advantage and is not known to have a big punch, it was her that elected to get inside and make the action more compact.
This of course played directly in the champion’s favor because all she had to do is time her opponent as she came in. Additionally, she used her boxing ability to pick Thanderz off from a distance behind the jab and evade any possible counter attack with her footwork.
Each time Thanderz stepped in, there was a jab waiting for her. Also, the challenger had a terrible night trying to cut the ring off. This didn’t help her problems as she consistently followed the champion around the ring which made her an even easier target to hit.
The problem here was Thanderz didn’t understand how to bait Harper into letting her get inside. The Norwegian hardly threw feints and while her jab was working, she kept dipping her head to the right every time she threw it. This allowed Harper to pinpoint exactly where the challenger was going to be after attempting to setup her attack.
A QUICK TURN-AROUND
The tale of this fight was told when in the eighth round, the challenger stopped chasing Harper, stood in the middle of the ring, dropped her hands and glared at her. Meanwhile, the champion kept her distance and just bounced on her toes as if to say “catch me if you can!”
Then suddenly in round nine, a hook left hook to the body saw Thanderz grimace in pain as she retreated towards the ropes. The champion quickly closed in and concentrated on a sustained body attack. Her goal was to land that same shot again and put the challenger out of her misery.
Thanderz had no answers as the initial body shot put her 100% on the defensive. She would absorb massive shots until the referee decided to halt the bout. Many watching would think the fight could have been premature but the challenger had no issues with the stoppage.
MOVING ON TO A UNIFICATION
Newly crowned WBO champion Mikaela Mayer has been talking heavy on social media about Harper. It’s a fight she has been calling for over the last year. In the post-fight interview, promoter Eddie Hearn made it clear the next move for the champion is to unify. Although against who, was not specified.
Hopefully, fans can get Mayer and Harper in the ring next as this fight is due!
By: EJ Williams