Kirstie Bavington returns to action this Saturday to defend her EBU European championship against undefeated German, Naomi Manns, at the Magna Carta in Rotherham writes Jack Heather.
The 30-year-old captured the esteemed welterweight title in her hometown of Wolverhampton earlier this year when she defeated former world title challenger, Timea Belik.
She said, “I’m excited to get back out there but there is an added element of pressure as well because I now want to keep the belt, it’s mine to lose and I have worked so hard to get here.”
Previous defeats to Cherelle Brown and Sandy Ryan have only motivated the Black Country boxer who is determined to never taste defeat again.
She said “I know what it is like to lose so there is no fear of failing for me. I won’t lose again, I’m a better boxer now and in better hands at BCB. I have been sparring with better people and been working more on my technique and improving my ring IQ.”
Bavington will be hoping for a successful first defence of her title and is in a confident mood ahead of taking on this weekend’s 6-0 opponent.
She said “I’m going to take that ‘0’ away from her.
“I am naturally an aggressive pressure fighter and am fit so I can keep the pace up for the ten rounds, I want to give her no time to rest. I’m going to put it on her.
“I always look to finish it early, but I am probably better from the sixth round onwards where I am getting into my stride”
Bavington also works as a P.E teacher at the Beacon Hill Academy in Sedgley and her students are excited to see her back in action.
“They will hopefully watch it on Fight Zone or BBC I Player, they are always excited and are asking about it which adds an element of pressure as well.” She said.
“I want to go back to them on the Monday after and say that I won because it inspires them to succeed and no matter where you come from you can achieve big things.”
‘Bavvo’ was keen to stress that she was not looking beyond this Saturday’s opponent but reaffirmed her ambitions for more honours.
She said “I want a world title shot and that is what I believe I will become. In the end, I will become a world champion.”
Bavington will headline the card in Rotherham, which will be available to watch on FightZoneTV.