Alycia Baumgardner vs Christina Linardatou
Alycia Baumgardner is arguably the biggest name in the Women's Super Featherweight division. She has held belts on multiple occasions, however, she has only lost a single fight since her professional debut in March 2017.
We’ll come back to that loss a little later, however. Baumgardner is one of the names helping project Womens Boxing into the limelight. Alongside the likes of the new undisputed Super-Middleweight Champion Savannah Marshall, Claressa Shields, Chantelle Cameron, Katie Taylor and many more.
So, that loss we mentioned. Her only professional loss came to the Greek, Christina Linardatou who took her WBC International Female Super Featherweight title. Christina then stepped up to Welterweight where she won the WBO Female Junior-Welterweight title.
However, she hasn’t fought since June 27, 2022. Baumgardner has stayed active, with her last fight being a Unanimous Decision win over Elhem Mekhaled in February 2023. This one is going to be an interesting fight given the history, but before we delve into that history properly, let’s take a look at the fighter profiles.
14-1 (7 KO’s)
14-2 (6 KO’s)
WBC, IBF, WBA, WBO, The Ring
Now that’s out of the way, how do they match up? Firstly, Baumgardner has a slight height and reach advantage, which can prove to be huge in boxing; however, it isn’t always the case, like when David Haye (6’3”, 78” reach) fought Nikolai Valuev (7’0”, 85” reach), and Haye went on to win, taking his WBA Heavyweight title. Crazy scenes, really.
Back to the fight at hand, at 35 years old, Linardatou is more experienced, but they have had a very similar number of professional fights. As we mentioned, however, Linardatou hasn’t fought since June 2022, while Baumgardner has had 2 fights in that time and one in November 2022.
Baumgardner is arguably the more aggressive fighter of the two, with Linardatou being a more technical fighter. Their first fight and Baumgardner's only loss were on July 28th, 2018. By this point, Baumgardner had only been a pro for a year, and it’s fair to say that the lack of professional experience showed. Both fighters traded blows in round one, and it seemed fairly even, surprisingly, Linardatou was the most aggressive of the two early doors.
Linardatou took control in the second round, and the third round saw more of the same. Linardatou took the initiative and led from the front foot for a lot of this fight, but the youth of Baumgardner would come through as the fight approached the 6th, 7th and 8th rounds. But it was too little, too late, and experience shone through. A split decision saw Linardatou take the WBC International Super Featherweight title from Baumgardner.
This history makes this upcoming fight even more interesting, as if the card wasn’t already exciting enough. Not only is Baumgardner defending her Undisputed title status against Linardatou, but this card also features a Light Welterweight bout between the 18-1-1 Montana Love in his first fight after his disqualification in November 2012 against the 16-0 Richardson Hitchins, as well as a lightweight clash between Olympic Gold Medalist, Cuban Andy Cruz, who is making his professional debut against the 35-7-3 veteran Juan Carlos Burgos. It’s going to be an interesting card with something for everybody. But how do the experts feel some of these fights will be going?
For the odds on these fights, we checked out all of the best sports betting apps and websites around the internet, and this is what we came up with! To start with, Montana Love vs. Richardson Hitchins, these two fighters are quite evenly matched, both of them, sort of, undefeated. That is if we ignore the disqualification loss of love. He only threw a guy out of the ring, right? The experts see this one quite close, but Love gets the edge at -188, returning £7.66 from £5. Hitchins comes in at +137, returning £11.87 from the same stake.
For Andy Cruz, in his debut against Juan Carlos Burgos. There is no easy way to say this, so Burgos fans look away now. Andy Cruz comes in as the heaviest favourite I’ve seen for a while.
At -2800 he returns £5.17 from a £5 stake. I wouldn’t really advise taking a stake in this unless you’re a millionaire or are adding it to an accumulator. Finally, the main event. The title fight between Baumgardner and Linardatou.
Now, for me, this should be closer than the experts are thinking, Linardatou is a solid boxer with a good head on her shoulders, however, the experts put her as the +600 underdog, returning £35 from £5. Baumgardner, however, comes in as the -1000 favourite, returning £5.50. Will decide who’s going to take the WBC International Super Featherweight title again.
So, boxing fans. How do we see this one going? Will Baumgardner's continued growth since her loss to Linardatou prove too much to handle? Does Linardatou just have Baumgardner's number? I can see this one being another close fight, but Linardatou isn’t getting any younger.
This could be her last shot at gold, and at 35 years old, she’ll be throwing everything she has at this one. For Baumgardner, though, she’ll be wanting to cement her legacy as arguably the greatest women's super-featherweight boxer of all time, and revenge is going to be heavily on her mind.
With a little over a week to go before these two giants of the Women’s Super Featherweight division take to the ring, there will be many questions asked of both of these superstars.
Different groups of fans will be predicting different outcomes, despite what the oddsmakers are saying. For me, I’m just excited to see sparks fly. Regardless of whether the belts remain in the United States, or whether they travel across to European soil in Greece.