Your feminist-friendly guide to the women of the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. First up: Ireland’s Katie Taylor.
Country: Republic of Ireland
Sport: Boxing (lightweight). London 2012 will be the first time women’s boxing has been an Olympic sport.
Likely to win: Gold. As the current European and World champion in her division, she’s the number one seed and automatically has a place in the quarter-finals, which means she’s already one fight away from a medal.
Katie arrives back in Dublin after her latest World Championship win in May
Other reasons she’s interesting:
She’s been outspoken against the idiotic proposal by the Amateur International Boxing Association to make female boxers wear skirts and tight-fitting tops, even going so far as to say she won’t fight in the Olympics if those rules were enforced.
I don’t even wear miniskirts on a night out, so I definitely won’t be wearing miniskirts in the ring.
Katie Taylor image credit: Thomas Butler.
She rises above the insulting and sexist responses she gets for being a female boxer:
It is as though Katie’s father wanted a son. She is a beautiful young woman. I would rather see Katie playing tennis.
There’s something very unedifying about watching two women trying to flatten each others’ noses. Women as a rule don’t engage in physical violence.
and is determined to focus on showcasing her sport as well as her skills in London, calling for the very best fighters to get the wild-card spots for the Games.
She’s also a born-again Christian:
The Bible is my sports psychology manual, God is my psychologist.
If it’s God’s plan, I’ll win the fight.
and she also plays international soccer for Ireland: because sometimes, one international sport just isn’t enough.
See her: on Monday 6th August in the quarter-finals; and hopefully in the semi-finals on the 8th and finals on the 9th.