Natasha Jonas returns to the ring in January as she defends her IBF welterweight title against Mikaela Mayer in a hometown fight at the M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool.
Mayer, a former super-featherweight world champion, will be stepping up in weight as she bids to become a two-weight world champion.
|What||Natasha Jonas v Mikaela Mayer|
|Where||M&S Bank Arena, Liverpool|
|When||22:00, Saturday 20th January, 2024|
|How to watch||Sky Sports|
|Odds||Natasha Jonas 4/6, Mikaela Mayer|
This 10-round contest between Natasha Jonas and Mikaela Mayer will take place on Saturday 20th January 2024 with the ring-walks anticipated some time around 22:00, depending on how the undercard progresses on the night.
The fight is a hometown bout for Jonas in Liverpool, with the bout taking place on the banks of the Mersey at the Liverpool Arena, currently known as the M&S Bank Arena.
The indoor venue, which was opened in 2008, has a maximum capacity of 11,000 and has hosted a number of sporting events, including Premier League Darts and elite-level basketball.
It is also a well-known entertainment arena and has staged music concerts by artists such as Justin Bieber, Little Mix, Paul McCartney and Beyonce down the years.
The fight will be broadcast on Sky Sports in the UK, with further details to be confirmed nearer the time.
Yes. Jonas is defending her IBF welterweight for the first time, having claimed the belt by stopping Canada’s Kandi Wyatt in the eighth round in Manchester in July.
Jonas also holds the WBC, WBO and IBF light-middleweight titles but those are not on the line in January. Mayer doesn’t currently hold any titles but has previously been a world champion at super featherweight.
Jonas made her debut in 2017 with a first-round TKO victory over Monika Antonik and she claimed stoppage wins in each of her first four fights.
The 39-year-old won her first six fights but then suffered a setback as she was stopped in the fourth round by Brazil’s Viviane Obenauf, as her corner threw in the towel after she had been knocked down three times in two rounds.
Jonas responded with three wins in a row to set up a title fight with the unbeaten Terri Harper for the IBO and WBC super featherweight titles. That clash ended as a draw and then Jonas moved on to a huge showdown with Irish superstar Katie Taylor.
Jonas was bidding to become the unified lightweight champion but she was unable to inflict what would have been a first defeat on Taylor as she lost by unanimous decision.
The southpaw finally managed to claim a world title at the third attempt as she stopped Chris Namus in the second round to land the vacant WBO super welterweight crown and in her next fight she added the WBC belt with a points win over Patricia Berghult.
Jonas claimed the IBF crown by seeing off Marie Eve Dicaire and then became a two-weight world champion by securing the IBF welterweight title with a dominant performance against Wyatt.
Mayer made her professional debut in 2017 and, like Jonas, she started her career with a first round stoppage - against Widnelly Figueroa in LA.
The Colorado native won her first seven fights before challenging for a regional title, outclassing Vanessa Bradford over eight rounds in 2018 to land the North American Boxing Federation super featherweight title, setting her on a course for world honours.
The 33-year-old fought five more times, all wins, before securing a shot at WBO super featherweight champion Ewa Brodnicka.
Brodnicka had to vacate the title after failing to make the weight, but Mayer claimed the title outright with a points win and in 2021 she added the IBF title to her collection by beating Maiva Hamadouche via unanimous decision.
Mayer suffered a first career defeat, and relinquished her titles, in a split decision defeat to Alycia Baumgardner at the 02 Arena.
The American’s last three fights have been in the UK and she was last seen claiming a points win over Silvia Bortot in September. Mayer is stepping up in weight to challenge for Jonas’ IBF belt.
Natasha Jonas is the favourite to win at , while Mayer can be backed at 11/10 to prevail by any method.
The full undercard is yet to be confirmed but Jack Cullen will take on Zak Chelli for the second time for the British and Commonwealth super middleweight titles. Cullen and Chelli met in 2020 in a fight that ended as a draw.
Also on the undercard is Olympic bronze medalist Karriss Artingstall who takes on Brazilian featherweight Lila dos Santos Furtado. The bout is Artingstall's sixth on the professional scene as the undefeated Brit continues her hunt for a shot at the featherweight world title.