|Shaun post-fight with her Dad and the trainer at Patong gym in Thailand.|
Shauna Nicole (16) fights in two weeks on the Siam Warriors Muaythai Supershow in Cork Ireland. She talked to me about fighting in Ireland and Thailand, football and dancing with the Montfort school.
Photos on Shuna’s social media profile jump from satin dance outfits to the sober blue of her soccer team via bottles of Thai oil and lots of Muaythai training photos. This is not someone who takes the lazy approach to life.
She started training at 13 with Cobra Thai in Cork, but things really took off when her dad took her on a long holiday to Thailand about two years ago. Away from school, and in an environment where fighting is as natural as playing a game of football Shauna found herself drawn in.
She said: ‘My dad trains, he loves it. I love travelling so I loved it over there. I was nervous fighting, but I was so much more confident after that. I fell in love with the sport. I was so lucky that my dad could bring me over.’
|Even fighters love a bit of pink!|
Now she trains regularly, getting up at 6am to run with a friend before school – although she admits to feel grumpy at that hour.
Trying to explain why she loves training so much, she says: ‘It’s a great place to go especially if you’re not feeling 100%. If you just stay at home and go to bed, you wake up the next day and nothing changes. If I’m in a bad mood I want to be with my gym family; that what Cobra feels like for me.’
She lists off all her hobbies including ballet and tap dance, saying: ‘A lot of girls look at Muaythai as a boys’ sport. That is ridiculous. I would disagree, I like to get my hair done and all but training is training. There are more boys than girls, but they don’t treat you any different.’
She would like to fight more often, but the numbers of junior female fighters are still quite low in Ireland. Her second fight was against someone about ten years older even though their experience level was similar.
Shauna said: ‘All my friends were there, I was a nervous wreck, people kept telling me how old she was even though it doesn’t matter. Derek my trainer just kept saying concentrate on your ability,that I put in the hard work and that’s all you can do.’
And the work continues. She said: ‘This will be my biggest fight so far. I feel I’m ready to go now. My nan is watching my diet, checking what I’m eating all the time, she’s great.‘I’m so grateful to Martin, the promoter and my trainer for arranging this; there are only four girls on the whole show. All my friends, my family, everyone will be there. I can’t wait.’
Shauna trains at Cobra Thai gym in Cork city. More info on Siam Warriors Supershow.
She is also part of the Muaythai 4 life suicide awareness film project.