Being Able to Bet on Women’s Boxing May Make It More Popular

Boxing has lost a lot of its popularity over the last 20 years but the ability for people to bet on women’s boxing may help to reinvigorate boxing in the eyes of sports fans.

Will the Ability to Bet on Matches Elevate Women’s Boxing?

There was a time when boxing was king. Everyone knew who the heavyweight champion was. In fact, it was likely that most sports fans could tell you who the champs were in at least a few weight classes. Men like Mohammad Ali, Sugar Ray Leonard, Marvin Hagler, Mike Tyson, and George Foreman became household names and were as popular as any figure in sports.

This is no longer the case. With the rise of MMA and the lack of big-name superstars in the boxing world, the sport has fallen into near oblivion. It is likely that even diehard sports fans could not even tell you who the heavyweight champion is these days. It has many wondering if the days of boxing being a big-name event in the sports world are dead.

The Odds Are Against It

While it may not have the popularity it once observed, boxing is still drawing attention, especially within the betting world. Sportsbooks are still finding that a lot of action is being taken on these events, especially in New Zealand.

The best sports betting sites in the country are offering odds on events, including several different forms of prop bets. You can see the details completely covered here for the top licensed online bookies in NZ. Here you will learn that there is still a significant amount of interest in betting on these events.

Women’s Boxing Enjoying Major Popularity

While the men’s game may not be drawing the same attention it once enjoyed, women’s boxing is becoming extremely popular. New Zealand is seeing a growing interest in the sport, primarily because a few of the top-ranked competitors are highly ranked, especially at the heavyweight level. New Zealand’s Sarah Long is the current New Zealand national heavyweight champion, ranked 10th by the World Boxing Council and 5th on Boxrec. After competing for almost 5 years in boxing she has finally received her major boxing rankings and her National title.

She is not the only one. New Zealand has two other heavyweight fighters ranked in the top ten by the World Boxing Council. Alrie Meleisea, ranked eighth and Geovana Peres ranked forth, However Geoavan Peres now has retired from professional boxing. The other major organisation World Boxing Association also includes some New Zealand boxers including Arlie Meleisea again, ranked second overall, and Lani Daniels, ranked eighth. And finally, we look at boxrec overall rankings with Lani Daniels ranked first, Alrie Meleisea ranked third, Sarah Long ranked fifth and finally, Ashley Campbell ranked eight. Clearly, it is a great time to be a women’s boxer in New Zealand.

Top Eight Heavyweight Fighters: WBC

  1. Laura Ramsey (USA)
  2. Danielle Perkins (USA)
  3. Sonya Fox (USA)
  4. Geovana Peres (NZ)
  5. Lorissa Rivas (USA)
  6. Irais Hernandez (MEX)
  7. Gwendolyn O'Neil (USA)
  8. Alrie Meleisea (NZ)
  9. Claire Hafner (CAN)
  10. Sarah Long (NZ)

Top Eight Heavyweight Fighters: WBA

  1. Nadia Meknouzi (MAR)
  2. Arlie Meleisea (NZ)
  3. Annie Mazerolle (CAN)
  4. Laura Ramsey (USA)
  5. Elena Kuzina (RUS)
  6. Samantha Pill (USA)
  7. Lorissa Rivas (USA)
  8. Lani Daniels (NZ)

Top Eight Heavyweight Fighters: Boxrec

  1. Lani Daniels (NZ)
  2. Laura Ramsey (USA)
  3. Alrie Meleisea (NZ)
  4. Gwendolyn O'Neil (USA)
  5. Sarah Long (NZ)
  6. Annie Mazerolle (CAN)
  7. Nadia Meknouzi (MAR)
  8. Ashley Campbell (NZ)

This is our current ranked New Zealand boxers. We also need to talk about some boxers who will be formerly ranked and future ranked boxers including Gentiane Lupi. Gentiane is a former New Zealand national champion, WBA Oceania champion and WIBA World champion. She was ranked in the top 15 in all boxing bodies including 15th in WBA, and top 10 in IBF and WBC. She is also currently ranked 6th on boxrec. Baby Nansen is a former New Zealand National champion who was formerly ranked 40th in the WBC. She has also been one of the few New Zealanders who have fought at Madison Square Garden.

A future world-ranked boxer Mea Motu who has already fought five times in the space of four months and she is still undefeated with 5 wins with 2 wins by knockout. Knockouts in women boxing in New Zealand is a rare thing, which is saying something for someone who has two of them. Another future World ranked boxer is Ariane Nicholson who has an incredible amateur background with Gold medals at the Arafura Games and multiple wins at Golden Gloves and New Zealand Nationals Championships.

We have to mention the two world champions coming from New Zealand, the first-ever IBF World champion in the IBF Sanctioning body Daniella Smith and the first-ever Light heavyweight champion ever WBO Light Heavyweight champion Geovana Peres. Both women work incredibly hard to become world champions and representing multiple communities. Daniella Smith represents Maori Women and Geovana Peres representing the LGBTIQ+ community to be positive role models for their communities and Women boxing.

We need to acknowledge the people who help build the women division in New Zealand including Benjamin Thomas Watt who has either promoted or matchmade multiple women including Nailini Helu, Geovana Peres, Sarah Long, Cheyenne Whaanga, Kirsty Lupeamanu, Alrie Meleisea, Diane Beazley, Ashley Campbell, Tania Reid, Gentiane Lupi and many more. Bruce Glozier not only promoted multiple World women title fights but continues to promote Women-focused and main eventing women. Craig Thomson continues to promote multiple events a year including at least a show a year for women boxers to compete on.

Bringing Gambling into the Ring

Women’s fighting is seeing a level of popularity that has never been seen before. This is occurring across several different forms of boxing, including UFC, MMA, and boxing. Popular women’s figures such as Rhonda Rousey have helped to elevate the sport in the eyes of many women, drawing them into the arena.

Fans are flocking to these events and paying big money for pay-per-view events where women are the featured event of the evening. That has caught the attention of sportsbooks, who are now taking an even greater interest in offering several different types of bets related to women’s fighting events.

This has many wondering if there will be a resurgence in the boxing world. Not on the men’s side, which look like they have been replaced by MMA, but in the women’s arena instead.

Interest Extending Across Weight Classes

What makes this phenomenon good for the boxing world is that the interest in women’s boxing extends beyond the heavyweight class. There are 16 different weight classes for women, with five being in the flyweight and minimum weight classes. There are heavyweight, middleweight, welterweight, lightweight, featherweight, and bantamweight classes as well.

Because of the diverse weight classes in the women’s rankings, it is drawing fans and competitors at all levels. People are enjoying the variety of athletes that are competing. They are finding their favorites in each class, especially when they are placing wagers. Many gamblers are finding that they can keep up with two or three weight divisions and are informed enough to be able to place wagers on those events.

In MMA, there are 15 different weight classes for women, starting with strawweight (115 lbs) all the way up to super heavyweight. Currently, there are no women competing in super heavyweight but there are several women fighting at the heavyweight level (265 lbs).

What has been impressive to many analysts is that the level of competition is near the same quality as that of what they would find in the men’s rankings. Women can be just as skilled, just as competitive and just as brutal as their male counterparts. This is why fans are finding that there is no drop-off in the competitive level between men’s and women’s boxing.

Looking to Build and Expand

Another thing that has boxing insiders excited about the women sport is that it is just beginning to grow in popularity. The sport is dominated by women from six or seven countries right now, but there will become a point where more women will become involved in the sport. Many are seeing its popularity rising in the same way that women’s soccer did.

Countries such as the United States, Canada, Japan, Brazil, France, and Norway dominated women’s competition early on, but now there are 15 to 20 countries that have teams that could compete to reach the final four of the women’s World Cup.

This has many in the sports world thinking the same pathway will find its way in women’s boxing as well. This could especially be true in countries where women are playing as important of a role in the workforce as men. There are women who can handle the rigors of fighting in the ring three or four times a year, who already have proven themselves to be quite competitive and tough in other areas of their life.

Will women’s boxing ever grow to the same level of stature as men’s boxing was in the 1960s, 70s, and 80s? That may not ever occur. However, with sportsbooks making it a point to focus on these events, it is quite likely that women’s fighting will surpass men's in terms of popularity and number of wagers placed. This is only going to spur the industry even more, maybe even making it the most popular women sport on the planet.

Written by Lucy