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Bailey Sugden earns unanimous decision win over Quade ‘The Magician’ Taranaki in GLORY 63

A Newark kickboxer has returned to England with his 12th professional career win after defeating New Zealand’s Quade ‘The Magician’ Taranaki.

Fighting on the GLORY 63 SuperFight Series card in Houston, Texas, in a 2,850 capacity arena, Bailey ‘BadBoy’ Sugden won on a unanimous decision.

The win was Sugden’s sixth appearance on the world’s leading kickboxing stage and the 21-year old’s professional record now stands at 12 wins (two by knockout) from 16 fights.

James Law / GLORY Kickboxing (6944932)
James Law / GLORY Kickboxing (6944932)

“There was a lot of trash talk from Quade in the build up to this one, questioning my fitness and my ability to take his body shots,” said Sugden.

“My response to his comments was we would see about that.

“He may have shown himself to be tough in previous GLORY bouts, but he would be lucky to see the end of the fight going up against the BadBoy.”

Sugden was first to land a clean strike as he cracked Taranaki with a body kick and followed with punches in the pocket.

When Taranaki responded by kicking out his opponent’s back leg, Sugden went back to work with his punches, and surprised his 24-year-old opponent with his hand speed.

As the end of the first round approached, Taranaki brought a right hand over Sugden’s guard and the pair exchanged short strikes in the centre of the ring, before Taranaki missed with a spinning kick.

Although the round was close, it was Sugden who landed the more eye-catching shots.

A narrow miss with the flying knee opened the second round for Sugden and, while light on his feet, the Newark-based fighter followed instructions from his corner as he put two-faced attacks together in another close round.

Sugden moved well and showed patience in his attacks as the second round came to an end, the 21-year-old showing qualities with which he is not normally associated.

Going into the third, and being two rounds up, Sugden went out and enjoyed himself and showed his exciting, aggressive fighting style, to the delight of the crowd in the Arena Theatre.

Although Taranaki landed a big left hand, a big knee from Sugden wobbled him badly and he needed the ropes to stay upright when attempting a spinning attack.

BAILEY ‘BADBOY’ SUGDEN attempts a flying kick against QuadeTaranaki. Credit: James Law ­GLORY Kickboxing.
BAILEY ‘BADBOY’ SUGDEN attempts a flying kick against QuadeTaranaki. Credit: James Law ­GLORY Kickboxing.

Sugden failed to put him down, but was constantly going up through the gears and levels as his opponent, showing an increasing sense of urgency, tried, without success, to find an opening in the final minute.

Sugden said: “His comments in the pre-fight interviews just made me all the more determined to prove that I could definitely keep up the pace for the full three rounds, and I wanted to showcase some new skills while I was doing it.

“I think I did both pretty convincingly and I loved fighting in Houston ­— the fans seemed to love it too and responded really well to me before and after the fight.”

Sugden said he hoped to get back into the ring again soon, but was turning his attention to his brother Regis, who is in a training camp for his debut professional boxing bout on March 16.

Unsurprisingly, Suggy’s Gym head coach Dean Sugden was delighted with Bailey’s performance.

“So many well-respected fighters and coaches commented on Bailey’s hand speed and boxing skills, not to mention his ninja-like kicking in the third round,” he said.

“He’s a natural fighter and a natural entertainer too, so expect more of the same and, above all, never underestimate just how tough and difficult to hit he is.

“He’s already ranked number ten in the world by the biggest kickboxing promotion but he’s still growing as a fighter and he’s only going to get better and better.

“Going forward, we would love to get in the ring with France’s Victor Pinto, who’s only 25 years old, but very experienced and ranked number 6 on GLORY.

“Bailey’s shown on numerous occasions that he’s always ready to step up and test himself and we would love to have this fight either in Europe or in the States.

“Great Britain vs France ­— how about that for a really great battle?”

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