Some people are just born to fight and Ava “The Lady of Boxing” Knight has more than just an inclination to perform in front of a crowd with fists flying. Fish love the water and Knight loves to fight. Boxing is her element.
Oakland’s Knight (6-1-3, 3 KOs) flies to Colima, Mexico to vie on Saturday for IBF flyweight world champion Arely Mucino’s (14-0-1, 8 KOs) title. The fight will be televised in Mexico but not in the U.S.
Knight only has one loss on her record and that came against Ana Maria Torres, who like Mucino, fights for HG Boxing promotion company. It took place two years ago with the Northern Californian losing by decision.
That loss doesn’t sit right with Knight who took the fight despite suffering a bad back.
Now the Oakland-based prizefighter returns to Mexico to face another world champion known for fighting like a human buzz saw. Mucino attacks from the start winging blows like she’s paid by the punch, not the result.
“My last experience in Mexico taught me a lot. Mexicans love their boxers, and honestly I think everyone who backs them will do anything to make them win,” says Knight who is originally from Chico, California. “My experience wasn't too pleasant and I can only hope that this one will be better.”
The only evidence available of that fight is on Youtube.com in an extremely edited version that mostly shows Torres on attack. Very little of Knight’s punches were shown on the tape.
“I will not let the situations they put me in ruin my mind set on the fight this time. This time I am prepared mentally and keeping the game plan,” Knight says.
Knight’s last fight was against Southern California’s Kaliesha “Wild, Wild” West who is promoted by HG Boxing. The two girl fighters had fought each other in 2008 with Knight winning by close decision.
This past June, Knight and West met again. At stake was West’s WBO bantamweight world title in a match set for 10 rounds. It was one of the best female fights ever seen for many in attendance.
The speed of West propelled her to a fast start. Jabs and combinations landed crisply at first for the Moreno Valley prizefighter but Knight returned fire. Midway through the fight Knight began timing the oncoming blows and ignited furious counter attacks especially to the body. Both showed extremely fast hands and durable chins.
“Ava is very good,” says West whose fight with Knight ended in a draw in Pico Rivera, Calif. “She is a very tough girl.”
Knight finds it difficult to obtain a fight so she eagerly accepted the title fight in Mexico at a lower weight class. She is shedding six pounds to fight Mucino.
“I have been walking around at 114 for the past two months, so 112 won't be hard at all. No one believes me when I tell them 112 is my weight class, maybe because it seems only women who fight at 118 want to fight me, but flyweight is where I want to stay,” said Knight, who is trained by Ben Bautista. “I feel at flyweight there is a lot of competition too, great fighters with great records that I would love to have a go at.”
Step one takes place in Colima, Mexico and Knight doesn’t plan to win by decision.
“I'm training as if I am going to KO her because I know that they won't give me a win on points,” Knight said.
Knight loves to fight.
Who will win? Wladimir Klitschko or Tyson Fury?