MUAY THAI: Young fighter Holly Nguyen wants to add more gold to her new ensemble.
The 13-year-old muay thai fighter, who is set to wear the green and gold of Australia for the first time, plans to bring a gold medal home from Turkey.
Nguyen is part of the Australian team competing at the IFMA Youth Championships.
“I’m pretty excited but also a little bit nervous,” Nguyen said.
“I’m proud of the fact I get to represent my country for the first time, and I’m looking forward to the challenge of competing.”
Nguyen left for Turkey yesterday hoping to win the 46-48kg division but is also just as proud of her journey to date.
“The journey to a fight is the best bit for me,” Nguyen said.
“The hard work, the preparation, all the training is very satisfying.”
With the hard work behind her Nguyen will focus on being aware in the ring.
“You have to stay focused and make sure you’re consistently moving,” she said.
“Being aware is important too. You have to fight your fight, but if it’s not working you have to be ready for that challenge.”
Nguyen will also have an ace up her sleeve – more specifically in her corner. Her coach – Toowoomba’s Leon Spain – is also the Australian coach.
“Holly is probably the most well-rounded fighter I’ve seen at that age,” Spain said.
“She likes to kick and is one of the hardest kickers I’ve trained, but she has it all.
“She can punch, kick, knee and elbow – all the skills you need to be a good fighter.”
Nguyen’s best trait, though, is her attitude, according to Spain.
“I’ve been working with Holly since the start of the year,” he said.
“She has improved immensely over that time, and it’s down to her attitude.
“She works hard and is committed to her training.
“With 10 fights under her belt now, she has a good idea of what to expect and I think she’s a good chance of bringing home gold.”
Nguyen had to win gold at the Australian junior championships to be considered for the Australian team.