MADDY White is hoping the support which greeted her in her most recent sporting pursuit at Warrnambool Stadium will lift her in her boxing debut.
The multi-talented White was the standout performer when she last competed at the Arc in September, named most valuable player in the Warrnambool Mermaids’ Big V basketball grand final series.
Now she’s preparing to perform in front of her home crowd again – this time as an amatuer boxer on the War in the ‘Bool 2 card.
“It’s going to be weird coming back on the home court but in a different environment,” she said.
“I am more excited just to get out there and try out. I am nervous as hell about being knocked out but that’s all right.
“I just want to see how I go. It’s so fresh that I don’t know if I want to pursue it further.”
White is one of 16 Rodney ‘Rudy’ Ryan-trained boxers on the card.
She has used boxing training to help her basketball and netball fitness since she was 16 but only recently thought about jumping in the ring.
The RMIT university student, who is halfway through a chiropractics degree, is based in Melbourne and plans to play for Victorian Netball League club Boroondara next year rather than travel home to play for the Mermaids.
But boxing could become a part of her schedule – should she enjoy her debut fight.
“It’s so just unknown. In a basketball grand final, you just know what you need to do – you’ve been doing it all your life,” White said of her pre-fight nerves.
“Rudy’s done such a good job of preparing me for everything.
“They’re amazing in there.
“I think I am a bit taller than her (my opponent) so I am hoping my reach means I can stay back a bit.”
Ryan said White had the attributes to be a successful boxer.
“The transition has been quite easy for Maddy because she has good movement from basketball,” he said.
“She knows her spatial awareness and I guess that’s a basketball thing and she’s fit.
“Now it’s about getting in the ring and seeing if she’s tough as well.
“If she goes well here, I think she has an exciting future.”
Ryan said athletes could convert or add boxing to their repertoire because of their competitive natures.
Eight of Ryan’s 16 War in the ‘Bool 2 fighters are female.
His one professional fighter, Neekz Johnson, is among the headline acts.
“That’s amazing. I don’t think I’ve had eight girls on a card before,” he said.
“They have the Australian female coach (Bess Slater) in their gym which is pretty handy.”