Isabella Maffat: I did not expect to win silver medal at National Boxing Championship


2015-02-12 12:28 GMT+8

We are delivering you the interview of Isabelle Maffat who won silver medal at Mongolian National Boxing Championship after four months of training.

Could you introduce yourself, please?
My name is Isabelle Maffat. I am 27. I have been living in Mongolia for two years. Before, I graduated from Engineering School in Telecommunication of France and decided to go abroad to have new experience. Thus, I arrived in Mongolia in May, 2013. Currently, I am working as an engineer at Research Center for Astronomy and Geophysics at Mongolian Academy of Sciences. 

How long have you been training for box?
I have never tried box or any fighting sports, before. However, it was on my mind since a long time ago. I was doing training for basketball, volleyball and swimming. When I spoke to my friends from high school they said that I had always wanted to train for boxing. I have never competed for any boxing tournaments. My parents would not allow me to train for boxing. They used to tell me that box is challenging sport for women. You might break your nose, of course, women look terrible when they break their nose. 

However, now I am doing what I wanted to do. Two of my French friends were training at “Shiren Beelii” boxing club. One day, I challenged myself for training and I am very satisfied. The more you train the more you tire. However, it makes me feel relaxed and great. I realized that the box is the definite sport for me.

She is working as an engineer at Research Center for Astronomy and Geophysics at Mongolian Academy of Sciences. Have you planned to compete for National Boxing Championship?
No, I had no idea. I had participated for the National Boxing Championship by proposal of my coach. 

Did you loose your weight for the competition?
I had lost 5 kg to fight in 69 kg category. National Boxing Championship was held at end of the January. During the Christmas, I went back to France and stayed for three weeks. My coach told me not to eat much. Xmas table was filled with delicious meals that I love, that was really challenging for me to tolerate. After I had arrived, I injured my ankle. A month ago from the Championship, I had started to loose weight and started my training very hardly. 

Could you tell me about your coach, please?
My coach is Turuu and he offered me to participate in National Championship. There are four coaches at Shiren Beelin boxing club. Even, I could not speak Mongolian well, I am good at understanding. Turuu coach speaks in English and it helped me a lot. Moreover, my friend Zoloo who won silver medal at National Championship in 60 kg category, helps me on giving advices of boxing. The most impressive thing for me except the Championship is my club. My club is just like small family. Turuu coach keeps the favourable and comfortable atmosphere in the club. Training moment for the tournament was great time for me. 

Isabelle Maffat with four coaches of "Shiren Beelii" boxing club

Tell me about the impression when you arrived in Mongolia?
Of course, the French and Mongolians attitude is very different. Thus, I meet the difficulty to understand it. As my observation, Mongolians live in present time, they do not plan for anything because of their nomadic culture. For example, when you call somebody they will say "Let`s meet now". But I like being in Mongolia. I have many friends and I learned a little Mongolian language. Moreover, I like eating horhog (meat dish prepared in its skin or a rumen sac into which red hot stones are put in order to cook the meat), noodle soup and tsuivan. Horhog is really delicious.    

You had won the silver medal at National Boxing Championship. That might gave you great encouragement. Do you have next plan for boxing?
Sure. Silver medal definitely gave me motivation to continue training for boxing. People who surrounded me are suggesting me to train, too. I have trained for only four months and I want to improve my techniques more, further. At this time, I was so close to win gold medal. Thus, it is not my last tournament. 

Could you share with us your feelings when you fought for the gold medal?
I fought with O.Gerelgua from “Khangarid” boxing club for the gold medal. Previous match was E.Misheel and it was not that easy. However, I was very good and well trained. Unfortunately, I lost point at the last minute. Finally, I realized that winning needs more preparation, experience and time.

Photo moments of her fight for the gold medal

Gold medalist O.Gerlgua (Hangarid club), Silver medalist M.Isabelle (Shiren Beelii club), Bronze medalist A.Zuunnast  (Suhbaatar club),  B.Misheel (University of Physical Education)

Did you regret for loosing the match?
Of course not. I didn`t expect to go so far. I am very excited to win silver medal from National Championship. 

You mentioned that you were playing basketball and volleyball. Have you ever succeeded at any other sports?
No. I always trained for sports as hobby. I have never pushed myself as much as I did for boxing. Maybe the sports that I had trained before, hadn`t motivated me like boxing. I began to love sport here in Mongolia

Will you train for boxing when you go back to France?
Yeah, I will. I planned to go boxing club and continue the training when I go back to France.

What did your parents say when they heard that you won silver medal?
They were really impressed. Because it is the biggest competition in Mongolia, they didn`t believe that I won medal from Mongolian National Championship.

When will you return to your homeland?
I have two-year contract with my employer and it will be finished in mid of the April. I have planned to return in France at the end of the May. 

Have you travelled around Mongolia?
During my stay in Mongolia, I have travelled to all 21 aimags except of Bayan-Ulgii aimag. Mongolia has such a beautiful landscape. 

What is your plan after the interview?
I will go to my boxing club. I had rested for a while after the tournament. I missed my boxing training very much. 

Thank you for your interview. I wish you succeed in your job career and sport career.
Thank you. 

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