There haven’t been too many high-profile women’s boxing matches that we can say are “competitive.” Enter Mikaela Mayer and Maiva Hamadouche, who are contending this Friday to unify the WBO and IBF super featherweight belts.
The boxing betting lines should have this one favoring Mayer (15-0-0, 5 KOs) but mainly because of her name and status. And she should have a betting line that is her shortest since she was an underdog against Anastasia Belyakova back in 2016. Hamadouche (21-1-0, 17 KOs) could be a popular underdog in the online gambling community as she is primed to hand Mayer her first pro loss.
- Date: Friday, 11 p.m. ET
- Venue: The Theater at Virgin Hotels, Las Vegas, NV, USA
- Watch on: ESPN+
Mayer vs Hamadouche: Star-Making Bout
In some ways, this matchup is akin to the Chantelle Cameron vs Mary McGee fight from a week back. We have the highly touted boxer in Mayer, who fights technically, while Hamadouche is the lesser-known champion who goes in guns blazing.
The pair couldn’t be more opposite in build as well. Mayer is built more like a welterweight standing at 5-foot-9 with a 66.5-inch reach. She generally towers over her opponents while Hamadouche could be fighting in a lower weight class at just 5-4” with a 64-inch reach. Their strategies will differ, but to the winner goes both belts and a potential star in the making.
Hamadouche Hungry For An Upset
The French pugilist at one point was one of the better female lightweights. This is tall praise considering she’s fought a giant like Delfine Persoon, the only boxer to have beaten her. But Hamadouche’s stocky stature has worked to her advantage.
Being a smaller but thicker fighter has allowed her to be a battering ram of sorts. Hamadouche goes “HAM” (pardon the pun) in the boxing ring. She tucks her chin and attacks her opponents. She may have fought a lot of lowly competition, but an 81.8 percent KO rate is impressive.
Hamadouche has finished seven of her last eight opponents. Her power has translated well for the division. But to be worth betting online, she will have to be able to overcome the size and reach disadvantage. Her only loss was to a similarly sized boxer. Has the Frenchwoman learned from her loss enough to take advantage of this opportunity?
Mayer to Box for Her Life
It’s cliche to say that this is “Mayer’s toughest test.” At some point, young contenders like her will face a sizable step up in competition. But Mayer has not fought a mini-tank like Hamadouche yet. She has not been pressured too much in her fights and her last two opponents were not power punchers.
— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) October 31, 2021
Mayer has worked when she has room to operate and pick apart her opponents. She works behind a stiff jab and can tee off on boxers who lack head movement or footwork. If Mayer is to overcome this challenge, she will need to get used to being outside her comfort zone. Fast.
Hamadouche will push the pace on Mayer. She will cut off the ring and shove her into a telephone booth and work her entire body. This may be a chance for Mayer to show that she isn’t just a “beautiful” boxer, but she can get gritty and win ugly fights if needed.
Mayer has been vocal about fighting only the best competition, and this means all the champions. If she gets past Hamadouche, we can expect her to target the likes of WBA champion Hyni Mi Choi or WBC title-holder Terri Harper.