Lausanne, Switzerland, October 4, 2013 – AIBA Pro Boxing’s (APB) social media campaign “Boxer of the Week” headed to Tonga this time to chat with national boxing hero Uaine Fa. Following a week of attention dedicated to him on the APB Facebook and Twitter pages, the athlete’s international appeal also quickly became apparent with questions coming in for him from all over the world. As ever this resulted in an eclectic but intriguing array of queries for our regular fan-sourced interview.
Now training in New Zealand, Super Heavyweight (91+kg) Fa was forthcoming, likeable and quick to laugh throughout the piece. He explained that he has thought seriously about going pro since his earliest days in the sport. Yet he was plagued by that age old boxing question: to go pro or to the Olympic Games? Luckily APB provided him with the solution.
“Basically I started thinking about going pro from the moment I took up boxing at the age of 16”, said Fa. “I had set goals that I wanted to achieve before turning pro though. One of them was to get to the Olympic Games. I have unfortunately failed twice now despite making it through to the final phase of the qualifiers. The time was right to turn pro but I still really wanted to fulfil my Olympic dream. Then I heard what APB had to offer, which suited me perfectly. I just can’t wait to get started”.
APB’s magic mix of course is the fact that it is the first individual competition in history to allow boxers to compete in a pro-style event and still to retain their eligibility for the Olympic Games.
Fa went on to answer fans technical questions about boxing, including offering tips on Strength and Conditioning and how to combat jetlag. “It is difficult being so far away from competitions over here in New Zealand and Tonga”, he said. “But it’s also a chance for me to travel. People here can only dream of travelling to the places I’ve been to, so actually I’m really grateful. But yes. jetlag can be quite hard to deal with”.
His tip is to align his body clock with the destination time zone as quickly as possible. “When I am on the plane, I try to eat and sleep in sync with the country I’m travelling to. Actually I am quite lucky in that I can pretty much make myself comfortable anywhere”.
Finally, when asked if he had any funny stories from his career in the ring, he admitted that on his World Series of Boxing (WSB) debut, he forgot to bring his gum shield with him, resulting in him having to borrow a team mate’s in a move that he himself laughingly called “pretty gross”. It didn’t stop him from winning though.
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APB’s “Boxer of the Week” campaign was launched on May 13th. It is designed to unveil the entire APB boxers’ roster athlete by athlete.
AIBA Pro Boxing (APB) is a pro-style boxing competition program under the governance of AIBA, the International Boxing Association.
You can also follow APB on Twitter and Facebook