Savannah Marshall Stops Hannah Rankin to Win Vac. WBO Middleweight Title

Savannah Marshall dismantled Hannah Rankin in a brilliant seventh round stoppage, earning the vacant WBO Middleweight title

UNITED KINGDOM (October 31, 2020) — There was nothing quiet about the United Kingdom’s undefeated Savannah “The Silent Assassin” Marshall’s seven-round destruction of a determined Hannah Rankin. Rankin took a knee, after several punishing rounds, with just a few seconds to go in the seventh round. Once to her feet, the referee wisely stopped the one-way fight. That decision delivered Marshall (9-0, 7 KOs) the vacant WBO Middleweight championship.

The major headline is: Marshall’s sensational performance, against a mutual opponent, hints that the professional meeting between Marshall and history-making Claressa Shields should become a major priority. Shields (10-0, 2 KOs), the current undefeated unified Super Welterweight champion, walked through then undefeated Christina Hammer to become the undisputed Middleweight champion in April 2019.

Furthermore, a planned unification bout with IBF Super Welterweight champion Marie Eve-Dicaire doesn’t look likely for 2020. Shields’ next bid at history should be to address her one loss as an amateur – at the hands of Marshall.

All that can wait. Until Monday.

As for earlier tonight, Marshall made few errors against 30-year old Rankin (9-5, 2 KOs). Marshall’s nearly 6-foot frame, her attributes and array of skills instantly became insurmountable for the Scot. Rankin didn’t win a round in a November 2018 loss to Shields. However, she finished the fight.

Rankin had a brief moment in the first round while Marshall was settling into her rhythm. One Marshall found her preferred distance and started applying her arsenal, Rankin found herself outclassed and without solutions. Marshall seized full control of the fight over the last few rounds. She gave Rankin few instances to breathe in the seventh, and decision to continue was taken out of the Scot’s corner just a second before Rankin was about to head over to her team.


The official decision was a TKO at :01. Afterwards the Silent Assassin, and her team, found cameras and mics to strongly state that Marshall was the best 160-pound fighter in the world.

Marshall opened the bout moving stylishly with her upper body movement. She pumped some throwaway jabs to feel out her best range. Hannah Rankin forced the issue at times, got under a few Marshall punches and moved inside to make contact.

The 29-year old Briton’s jab set up a right hand early in Round 2. Rankin moved forward but found few openings. Marshall’s jab in the frame was livelier. Marshall fired some uppercuts as Rankin worked her way to her bobbing and weaving.

Marshall outmaneuvered Rankin early in Round 3 to set up a right uppercut. The two fighters exchanged punches fiercely in the second half of the frame. Rankin landed a right hand inside as Marshall made one of her few mistakes to that point.

Rankin doubled jabbed to Marshall’s chest shortly after the bell in Round 4. Marshall responded with a heightened work-rate. Marshall worked up and down over the final minute. Rankin’s face was bloodied following Marshall’s fierce rally.

Rankin opened the fifth round with full effort. Marshall operated from distance. She doubled up her right uppercut, she jabbed, mixed in various power punches, and circled around Rankin. Rankin never exited the fire, but by round’s end she looked overwhelmed by Marshall’s free-flowing attack.

Marshall continued to carve up Rankin with body work set up off of her fluid jab and smart distancing. Rankin struggled to find a safe haven anywhere near Marshall. Marshall attacked with her jab and left hook, and Rankin’s counters were defended by Marshall’s right hand which remained close to her chin.

In the seventh round Marshall’s attack remained sharp. She punished Rankin with body hands, working up and down. Rankin finally, and wisely, took a knee understanding the reality of the skills gap.

All photos by Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing 

RL Woodson

I'm all over the place, literally. Click on something and I'll explain it all. A Tribe Called Quest fan, Good Will Hunting, HTTR and Michigan athletics... #DLTCYO

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