If Savannah Marshall wants a rematch with Claressa Shields, she’ll have to travel to the USA to take on the undisputed middleweight champion once again.
Shields defeated Marshall in an epic battle for the WBC, WBA, IBF and WBO middleweight titles at a packed O2 Arena in London on Saturday in a show that broke viewing records.
The American star revealed afterwards she could have forced a rematch if the contest had been close or controversial.
“Like a majority or a split [decision]. You know I worked hard in the fight to make it unanimous. But I’m still not turning away from a rematch with Savannah. If her and her team want it, come on over to the USA and we can get it done, “Shields told Sky Sports.
“I just feel like if I came and fought her on her home turf, she needs to know what it feels like to come to my territory and do it because it’s very, very hard.
“I want her to have to experience what I experienced and we’ll see if she even fights the same, if she wants to come to the USA and fight against me.”
Their rivalry had grown over the last 10 years since Marshall defeated Shields as an amateur, still the American’s only loss in a boxing ring.
But Shields believes she has settled the score once and for all in this undisputed world title fight.
“I wouldn’t mind fighting Savannah Marshall again, but I don’t think the fight calls for a rematch,” Shields said.
“To me, when I watched the fight back it was eight rounds to two, somebody [could] say it was seven to three. But at the end of the day Savannah Marshall was supposed to knock me out. So people who are saying that the fight was this or that, to me it doesn’t need a rematch. But if that’s what the fans want, I’m down for it and I’ll beat her more convincingly.
“If the fans want a rematch. I will definitely do the rematch.
“If I do fight Savannah Marshall again, it’s going to be a cleaner decision. Maybe 10-0, or maybe even a knockout for myself because the fight had its challenges, but I definitely made easy work of everything that she brought to the table ,” she continued.
A return to the UK to box another champion however does appeal to her. Natasha Jonas is the unified WBO and WBC super-welterweight champion and takes on IBF title holder Marie Eve Dicaire on November 12, live on Sky Sports.
“I wouldn’t mind coming over here [Britain] and fighting against some of the girls who they have. I already beat Savannah Marshall but I’d fight against Natasha Jonas at 154lbs, Terri Harper [WBA champion] at 154lbs, whoever else that the fans want to see me fight,” Shields said.
“I would love to get some of the girls to come to the USA too, but as we’ve seen I’m not scared to come over here and put on a show and fight. Wherever is the biggest show, got the biggest venue and got the most money, that’s where I’ll be at.”
“If the fans want me to come back and fight Natasha Jonas, I’ll do that. Terri Harper, I’ll do that. Whoever they think is the best. But I showed on Saturday that I am levels above all these girls, she added.
Both Jonas and Harper have belts that Shields have already held before. “I was undisputed champion at 154lbs also,” the American pointed out. “Now that there are other world champs there, I’m willing to go there and face them because they said the smaller weight classes have better skills, but I couldn’t believe that. I’m the best skilled woman in boxing.
“I just think now in my career people just want to see me fight and I’ll just continue to fight against whoever everyone says is the best.
“I just want to fight the best and in order for women’s boxing to keep growing we have to make the best fights.”
But Shields warned, “I know in my fights moving forward, these girls are about to start going to sleep. Because if I can hurt Savannah Marshall, I know that I can knock these other girls out.”