Nat Wondergirl has enlisted the help of Manus Boonjumnong as she prepares for the special rules boxing match against Xiong Jing Nan. She has been working with the Olympic gold medalist to prepare for ONE Fight Night 14 next month.

Wondergirl has plenty of experience when it comes to Muay Thai. But she has never boxed before and the 2004 Olympics gold medal winner is helping her bridge that gap,

“We brought in Manus to train for the fight. Training has been going well. I feel good about my training with him, and he’s teaching me a lot. Boxing is all about footwork and head movement.”

Special rules

It is the first time ONE Championship has promoted a boxing match with MMA gloves. Even Wondergirl admits that she was surprised to be offered the fight,

“I was kind of surprised. When they said special rules, I thought it would be one round striking, one round MMA, just like Demetrious Johnson and Rodtang’s fight. My first thought was, ‘Why?’ But then I saw the opponent and said, ‘Why not?’ I want the fight. So, I accepted the fight.”

She is coming off losses in both MMA and Muay Thai fights. Under normal circumstances Wondergirl would not get a chance to face one of the promotion’s reigning champions.


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Big opportunity 

Xiong Jing Nan holds the strawweight MMA belt and Wondergirl says the opportunity to fight a champion was simply too good to turn down,

“It’s a big opportunity to fight her. I feel grateful that ONE gave me the opportunity to face the champ. I’ll do my best.”

Wondergirl will be making her boxing debut and admits it will not be an easy fight,

“Xiong has some boxing experience and more experience in small gloves than me. She has good hands as well. It’ll be a tough fight for me, but I’m happy.”

Good fighters

While Xiong Jing Nan is the only fighter to have ever held the strawweight MMA title she has not provided too much entertainment of late. That could explain why she was asked to make the switch to boxing and Wondergirl is not sure what approach her opponent will take,

“This fight is not for the belt, it’s a special rules fight. So maybe she’ll go forward, aggressive or just play it safe and try to score (points).”

Wondergirl’s recent results have been mixed. But her losses have come at the hands of top fighters like Lisa Kyriacou and Jackie Buntan and she is happy to have been in with some elite opponents,

“I prefer to fight with good fighters. I can be the underdog. One of my goals is to fight with good people rather than (stay) undefeated but with low-level fights.”

Fun experience 

The result won’t appear on either fighter’s boxing record. So in that respect there is less pressure and Wondergirl sees it as a fun experience,

“I will give it my all. It’s fun for me to do this kind of stuff, win or lose. I’m the one who’ll get more experience and get better.”

But she admits that the ruleset does not really suit her,

“For me, it’s kind of hard. Like you can’t teep or kick with your legs. I can just use my two hands and upper body.”

With two fights in the space of three months she is at least staying active after an entire year on the sidelines. Wondergirl has nothing to lose heading into this special rules fight and can turn her career around completely by beating a champion.