In her new autobiography, Kellie Harrington claims that not only her career, but the wider world of women's boxing in Ireland, were held back by coach Pete Taylor.
Taylor - father of Katie - was also involved in coaching Harrington during the early years of her career. The recent claims from Harrington suggested that he prevented boxers from sparring with his daughter, on top of several claims about his and the IABA's impact on Irish women's boxing.
Taylor was furious when he took to Instagram on Monday night to refute Harrington's claims, claiming that it is unlikely the Dubliner would have achieved the success she has today without him. He also called her comments an attempt at making "lies and scandal".
Pete Taylor shares lengthy response to Kellie Harrington criticism
Pete Taylor was reunited with daughter Katie ahead of her successful defence of the world lightweight title in London on Saturday night. He had previously served as one of Katie's coaches earlier in her career, but a familial fall out just before Rio 2016 brought an end to it.
Though Katie Taylor has most certainly reaped the rewards of her early boxing training in Ireland, though Kellie Harrington shared some claims in her new autobiography which suggested she thought that Taylor's father Pete had held her back.
Harrington was recently crowned European 60 kg champion, and her new autobiography Kellie with Roddy Doyle was released last week.
Last month, the Independent shared comments from Harrington's autobiography in which she suggested that Pete had protected his daughter in training, and that his attitude to women's boxing had held the sport back. She said:
I could have learnt so much training with Michael Conlan and Paddy Barnes and Kenny Egan, and Katie Taylor. But it just wasn’t happening, and that made it really hard. Katie didn’t spar with females; Pete didn’t want her sparring with them. I asked for it, but it never happened.
At that age, there was one standout role model for me and that was Katie and it was strange as I genuinely thought the world of Katie back then and she’s still incredible and an amazing athlete but it’s hard to keep that image when the father has held you back so much.
It’s hard to keep looking up to someone when the father was more or less holding me and holding women’s boxing back. The rest of us were seen as hangers-on.
Pete Taylor is a great coach but if it wasn’t for him women’s boxing would have progressed earlier than it has. He did what he wanted for his daughter. A lot of female boxers suffered because of it.
On Monday evening, Pete Taylor responded to Kellie Harrington's claims in a series of Instagram stories.
He fought back at Harrington's claims that he had held women's boxing back, and suggested that Harrington would not have enjoyed such success were it not for him:
I feel I have to address the lies and scandal Kellie Harrington has tried to create regarding my role in female boxing, to generate book sales.
I'd like to start by stating that I am proud of my role and efforts both with the IABA and AIBA working to get female boxing recognized and for spearheading campaigns to get female boxing sanctioned in Ireland and as an Olympic sport.
Kellie would unlikely be in the position she is today if it wasn't for that: FACT.
Taylor came out swinging in his stories, fighting back against Harrington's claims that he stopped her from boxing early in her career, while also responding to her claims about preventing Katie from sparring.
Each paragraph in Taylor's Instagram response finished with the word "FACT" - signalling his anger at the claims from Harrington.
You can read the full rant from Pete Taylor in the screenshots below.
He closed off his rant by making a pointed remark about the up-and-coming Amy Broadhurst. Taylor seemed to insinuate that Harrington herself was holding Broadhurst back.
You should now step up to the plate, something you have not done previously and give the current amateur world champion Amy Broadhurst a box off instead of avoiding her in the national championships (sounds familiar)
You may be Olympic champion a great achievement, but you are currently the third best female 60 kg boxer in the country behind Katie and amateur world champ Amy Broadhurst
The response from Pete Taylor to the claims in Kellie Harrington's book will have done nothing to calm the situation, and it appears as though this spat could go on for quite some time.