Fighting Family

Irish world champion may need to refund Olympic ticket costs!

Last Updated: 05/12/11 1:27pm

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Katie Taylor: Comes from an Irish boxing family

Katie Taylor: Comes from an Irish boxing family

Hi, I'm Katie Taylor - I box for Ireland and I've won the last three World Amateur Championships at lightweight as well as nine European titles all in, and I hope to be winning another gold in London 2012.

Boxing has always been in my family, so it was no surprise I got into it really - my father boxed and he became the coach at the boxing club, my two brothers were boxing at the time so I just got into it through my family.

I was always a sporty child really so this was just a very natural thing for me to get involved in. I started when I was ten, a long time ago! I was into all kinds of sports at that age and it was just another one to keep me going, I never thought I would take it up as a full time career, it was just great training and I really enjoyed it.

I started going away to international competitions at 17, I became a senior boxer and got sent away to a few senior internationals and I started winning all of them! I beat the reigning world champion at the time and that's when I thought I could really make a career and make a living out of it.

My family have always been very supportive, my mother was the first female boxing judge in the country so she's really knowledgeable about the sport. I started boxing so young I didn't even know what people were saying - my family would have protected me from any negative comments that were going about.

I'm glad I stuck at it, there are always going to be people out there who have negative comments to say about women's boxing but you've just got to keep carrying on with things and keep plugging away to prove them wrong.

Olympic dream

It was a dream come true for every female boxer around the globe when it was announced that women's boxing was going to be included in the Olympics. We've really been working so hard to get it into the Olympics so it was a big relief.

We now have a chance to show what women boxers can do and the high standard we have so it's great for the sport. People didn't really realise how great women's boxing was, but when they started to look at it for the Olympics and saw how good it was they really couldn't not put it in.

It's going to be an amazing experience - it's definitely the closest to the Olympics we're ever going to get in Ireland and the support we're going to get will be unbelievable.

It basically feels like a home Olympics, everybody's talking about it over here and the excitement is just amazing. All people are talking about is how many tickets they've got, it's going to be so exciting and the support all the Irish athletes will get in London will be second to none.

All my friends have all got tickets but I keep telling them I haven't even qualified yet! They've all got tickets for the boxing but qualification for boxing for us isn't until next year - so no pressure! I'd definitely have to give them their money back if I don't make it!

Training

I'll be training like mad to get to London, I train twice a day, six days a week so I really do look forward to my rest days when I get them.

I've got the European championships next week, and I'll probably be expected to win. There's always pressure, but I'm looking forward to it, training has been going really well but I'm going to have to be at my very best to win the competition.

Every competition is a new one and what I've won in the past doesn't count for anything, your reputation doesn't win you anything and I'll have to prove myself all over again. This competition will be so tough.

People who are sceptical about it and are not aware of women's boxing skills will be shocked when the see how good the standard is.

Boxing is my first love, but I also used to play international football for Ireland - although I haven't played for Ireland for the last couple of years with the boxing taking over.

It's something I loved though and something I miss from time to time, being involved with the team and being around the squad. It's a huge honour playing for your country and maybe it's something I could pick up again after the Olympics at some stage, but for now I'm focused on boxing and seeing how that goes.

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