‘Why don’t women fight three-minute rounds?’

Mikaela Mayer and Maiva Hamadouche’s world championship unification clash and other women’s fights of its kind should be permitted to use three-minute rounds, says promoter Bob Arum.

WBO champion and IBF titleholder Hamadouche will unify their super-featherweight belts, live on Sky Sports, in Las Vegas in the early hours of Saturday morning.

All female fights, even at world title level, are 10 rounds of two minutes despite men’s boxing routinely using 12 rounds of three minutes.

Top Rank promoter Bob Arum advocates for three-minute rounds in women’s boxing

Top Rank promoter Arum, who guides Mayer’s career, said: “If women’s boxing is to take a prominent place, which it hasn’t but it should, it has to be more like what boxing fans are used to.

“In men’s boxing, the rounds are three minutes. In women’s boxing, they are two minutes. Why?

“In a championship fight, it should be three-minute rounds. If we are worried about that, reduce it to eight rounds rather than 10.

“We have to look at other individual sports. The one that comes to mind immediately is a sport where women’s participation is as interesting and as financially rewarding as men’s – tennis.

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“In tennis, women play with the same points scoring. A set is the same in women’s tennis and men’s tennis. The only difference is that women play three sets, men play five sets. In normal tournaments, they all play three sets.

“That enables people who follow a sport to see that the rules are the same.

Mayer vs Hamadouche, live on Sky Sports, early hours of Saturday morning

“Once you cut the rounds from three minutes to two minutes, you are telling the world that women’s boxing is different, and probably inferior to men’s boxing.

“If you are worried about concussions, do three-minute rounds but regulate the amount of rounds that women can fight.

“If we want to bring women’s boxing to the forefront we should advocate for that.

“If women boxers agree with me and want to elevate the sport, they should ask for three-minute rounds.”

Mayer said about the debate: “From experience that extra minute would change a fight.

“Look at men’s boxing – halfway through, after round six, our fight would be over. But theirs is taking a turn. The better conditioned, the sharper fighter, the higher-skilled fighter shines through and makes a statement.

“If we had that extra time you would see a difference.

“You would see more knockouts and the cream would rise to the top.”

Mayer’s WBO and Hamadouche’s IBF belts are at stake

Hamadouche said: “Three minutes for me would be favourable. I could accomplish more.”

Mayer, the Team USA 2016 Olympian, is undefeated in 15 pro fights heading into her most stringent test against France’s Hamadouche who has won 22 of her 23.

“This is my chance to show that I am the best in the division,” Mayer said.

The other belts at super-featherweight are held by Terri Harper (WBC) and Hyun Mi Choi (WBA).

Sky Sports Boxing schedule

November 6 – Top Rank in Las Vegas
Mikaela Mayer vs Maiva Hamadouche – IBF and WBO super-featherweight titles

November 6 – BOXXER in Liverpool
Super-lightweight tournament

November 20 – BOXXER in London
Richard Riakporhe vs Olanrewaju Durodola
Caroline Dubois professional debut
Florian Marku vs Jorick Luisetto
Hosea Burton vs Dan Azeez – British light-heavyweight title

November 20 – Top Rank in Las Vegas
Terence Crawford vs Shawn Porter – WBO welterweight title

December 11 – BOXXER
Savannah Marshall
Claressa Shields

December 11 – Top Rank in New York
Vasiliy Lomachenko vs Richard Commey
Jared Anderson vs Oleksandr Teslenko
Nico Ali Walsh
Xander Zayas

December 17 – Top Rank in Montreal
Artur Beterbiev vs Marcus Browne – IBF and WBC light-heavyweight titles

February 26 – Top Rank in Glasgow
Josh Taylor vs Jack Catterall – undisputed super-lightweight title

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