Delfine Persoon will become an amateur boxer from January 1, putting in doubt any potential rematch with Katie Taylor.
Indeed, at this stage the former long reigning WBC lightweight world champion will be more likely to trade leather with whoever the High Performance send to the Olympic Qualifiers, which take place London in March and Paris in May, next.
The Belgian has been vocal about both wanting a repeat of her undisputed June 1 world title fight with Katie Taylor and appear at the Olympics.
It now seems Toyko not Taylor have become the priority. As of the first day of 2020 the Police Officer will become an amateur boxer and will be unavailable to compete as a professional until she changes status again.
“After the New Year, Delfine Persoon is an amateur boxer”, confirmed her coach Filiep Tampere before he discussed the qualification process where Persoon could draw Ireland’s 60kg representative which is expected to be World Championship gold medal winner Kellie Harrington.
“To get to those Games, she must first complete two qualification tournaments. A first is in London in March. The second tournament in Paris will follow in May. The level in amateur boxing is very high. Among the participants in those tournaments are boxers who have won more than two hundred fights.”
“Moreover, the fights only last three rounds of three minutes. Delfine has become a diesel engine, she is used to long fights. So she has to go from a long distance runner to a sprinter.”
The move looks set to put any Taylor rematch on the back burner. The Bray fighter is more than keen for the repeat and wants to end any doubts with regard to who is the better lightweight of the two.
Matchroom and manager Brian Peters also want the rematch and believe it could be the first female pay-per-view bill-topper.
The latest talk with regard to a massive 2020 for Taylor was Amanda Serrano in the Spring, a Summer showdown with Persoon before the greatest of all time match up with fellow undisputed fighter Cecilia Brækhus.
It could be the order of the fights is turned around and Persoon will be the third fighter of 2020, or that rematch may just not happen.
If Persoon does compete in amateur competition she will be banned from the WBC rankings for two years, meaning she couldn’t compete for that particular strap.
IBF super featherweight champion Maiva Hamadouche also has Olympic plans and is another big name pro who will go back to the amateurs.