Boxing queen Katie Taylor has told Female First that she cannot watch her own documentary, after conceding she will never be comfortable seeing herself on a big screen.
Despite her record-breaking success as an amateur boxer - that included winning a gold medal at the 2012 Olympic Games in London and stunning triumphs since turning professional in 2016 - the WBA and IBF world lightweight champion has told us that she will always shy away from seeking attention in the media.
Former UFC champion Conor McGregor and a host of high profile boxers have used a manufactured media persona to hype their careers, but Taylor has told this website that she will always shy away from the spotlight.
“I don’t like seeing myself on big screen and that’s why I haven’t been able to look at this documentary,” Taylor explained as she spoke about the acclaimed documentary Katie, made in association with celebrated filmmaker Ross Whittaker.
“I’ve always hated looking at myself on TV and I actually don’t like looking back on things in my past. I’m the type of person that wants to look forward and not think about what has gone, my past achievements. That is the way I have always been.
“I love the boxing, that has always been the case thought my career, but everything else that goes with it has been tough for me at times and that’s why I haven’t watched this documentary. My family have watched it and said they enjoyed it and are proud of it. That's all that matters to me.
“Maybe when I retire from the sport in a few years time, I will have a chance to reflect on what I did, but we are still in the middle of it and I don’t feel like this is the moment for reflection.
“When I retire from boxing, maybe then I will look at this documentary, but it is not something I want to do right now.”
Taylor has been centre stage at a host of high profile pre-fight press conferences in the UK and America since she turned professional, but it appears the pressure of the cameras can still be more daunting than an opponent in the ring.
“I’ve done a lot of these big press events now, with hundreds of people there and all the cameras and I still don’t feel comfortable,” she said. “I am far happier in a ring and maybe that will always be the case
“My manager told me a when I did my first press conference for my pro debut that I would get to the stage where I started to enjoy these things, but I haven’t got there yet. It is a bit of a hassle for me, but I know it’s all part of the job.
“If there was a way of being a boxer and doing what I do without all the cameras and the press conferences, then I would love that, but I realise it is part of the job and I have to get on with it.
“You don’t have to say controversial things to enjoy a successful career in boxing. I look at someone like Manny Pacquiao and he is one of the most beloved fighters of all-time, but he has never said anything too contentious in press conferences or in interviews.
“Anthony Joshua is another perfect example of someone who is a great ambassador for his sport without needing to say anything to upset people. Gennady Golovkin is another one who is a gentleman outside the ring, but an absolute killer in the ring. It can be done.”
Despite being a icon of Irish sport for more than a decade, Taylor has managed to keep aspects of her private life under wraps and she insists that veil of secrecy will never be lifted.
“I have not found it too difficult to keep my life the way I want it,” she continues. “There are certain things I don’t talk about in public and it has not been too difficult to keep those issues away from the public eye.
“Even if you are successful in sport, you can live a quiet simple life and I have managed to do that. I don’t give away too much in interviews and maybe that’s the reason why people have enjoyed this documentary; [it] is [because] we gave the director Ross Whittaker access no-one has had before.
“I developed a trust with Ross [which] meant he had access to me [which] people haven’t seen before. That is why this documentary came out so honest and so raw. Ross became a part of the small family we have around us and he know more about me that we know ourselves.”
Katie is available to stream on various video-on-demand platforms now.