Local Boxer Set to Compete at London Olympic Games
Alexis Pritchard is over the moon at being included in New Zealand’s Olympic squad and to be at the 2012 London Olympic Games which sees the inclusion of women's boxing for the first time in its 116-year history. Alexis will compete in the lightweight division (57-60kg) for women's boxing at the games. Fellow Auckland boxer Siona Fernandes has also been selected – she will compete in the flyweight division (51-54kg).
Cameron Todd is Alexis’s long-time coach and also her husband. Todd will travel to London as the National Women’s Coach for the New Zealand team. It is a special accomplishment for the pair, after Todd planted the seed of the possibility of making the Olympic team in Alexis’s mind, when it was announced in August 2009 that women's boxing would be introduced to the games.
“To have women's boxing included in the Olympic Games for the first time with Alexis competing is a real high for me” says Todd.
The pair are locals around Britomart, where they train at City Boxing and are often seen re-fuelling in their favourite spots after training, such as Precinct Cafe, Pita Pit and at the City Farmers’ Market on a Saturday.
A winning mentality
While training has intensified for Alexis in the weeks following selection for the Olympic Games, she maintains that mental training is just as crucial as her twice daily physical workouts. When she is not training at City Boxing or lifting in the weight room with her strength and conditioning coach Nigel Harris, Alexis keeps her mind focused by repeating key phrases in her head. “Fight, fight, fight” or “I’m the best” Alexis says are two of the mantras which have a strong meaning for her and help keep her mentally composed in the ring.
The podium at London is her ultimate goal and having worked hard on her self-belief over the past few years, Alexis is confident in her ability to perform when it counts.
Valerie Adams and Hamish Carter are two athletes that Alexis greatly respects and looks to for inspiration. She says “I admire what Valerie has done with her career and how she has done it. Valerie has a real competitive edge, fierce passion and is always focused on the win. I also think Hamish Carter represents a great comeback story.” It is these two athletes who fuel Alexis’s fire to continue to train hard and compete with the best in the world.
But it’s not all about fighting. Scrapbooking and cake decorating may not be the first things that spring to mind when considering what a champion boxer might do in their spare time, but Alexis has more skills in her repertoire than just her signature straight right punch in the boxing ring. She also works part-time as a physiotherapist and says that it is this mixture of interests that helps keep her balanced as well as focused on what it takes to be an elite athlete.
The London Olympic Games take place from 27 July to 12 August, with the women's boxing rounds starting on 5 August.
Created 28 June 2012