Rugby player tack­les new sport

Matamata Chronicle - - What’s On - ABBY BROWN

Waikato rugby player Michelle Mon­tague will fight in her first box­ing match next year.

The event, Royal Ram­page, will also be the first time a fe­male world ti­tle fight will be held in New Zealand. On April 16 Gen­tiane Lupi will fight Ron­ica Jef­frey in the WBOWorld Fe­male Feath­er­weight Ti­tle Fight.

The Mata­mata res­i­dent will be one of the two cor­po­rate fights at the Trusts Arena in Auck­land. She will be the only Waikato boxer at the event. Pro­moter Lisa Lewis felt Duco hadn’t put on fairly matched fights for the Fight for Life so she had made sure her event will. Seven for­mer world cham­pi­ons will be also fight­ing.

Mon­tague said rugby had given her the phys­i­cal and men­tal strength to tackle box­ing and MMA, which she has started train­ing in 10 weeks ago. She spends 20 hour a week train­ing.

She doesn’t need to get used to phys­i­cal con­tact be­cause she is used to tack­ling play­ers. She said do­ing a take­down in MMA is ba­si­cally a tackle to her.

Grow­ing up with an older brother also shaped her. ‘‘Grow­ing up on a farm with him made me quite a phys­i­cal child to say the least,’’ she said. ‘‘I think my best friends from back in the day can vouch for that and say that maybe I was too rough and just didn’t know from be­ing on a farm and with my brother.’’

She said if she wanted to hang out The Mata­mata Chron­i­cle has two dou­ble passes to Royal Ram­page to give away. The first two peo­ple to pri­vate mes­sage the Chron­i­cle through our Face­book page will win th­ese.

with her brother when she was young she had to be tough be­cause ‘‘he didn’t want to play Bar­bies’’.

Mon­tague’s mo­ti­va­tion to get in­volved in the box­ing event was be­cause some of the money will go to Women’s Refuge. ‘‘Al­ready $5000 has gone to that or­gan­i­sa­tion and the event is on April 16 so there’s so much time to raise money.’’

Buy tick­ets at Roy­alRam­

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