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Michelle Preston Wins WBA Oceania Title

UK-born New Zealand boxer Michelle Preston wins her second WBA regional title against New Zealand-born Australian boxer Nicila Costello.

The five-time World Kickboxing Champion, Michelle Preston, won her first WBA title in 2007 when she became the first ever WBA PABA Bantamweight champion. 15 years later she wins her second WBA regional title with a win against Nicila Costello for the WBA Oceania Super Flyweight title.

Preston is now the second New Zealand female to win the title after Gentiane Lupi became the first WBA Oceania champion in 2016. However, Preston is now the first female to win it in New Zealand.

The first three rounds of the fight were very close between the three girls, but it seems the judges leaned towards Costello for her heavy hits, especially towards the body, and her aggressive fighting style. From round four onwards it was all Preston outboxing her opponent and using her reach advantage. Even though Preston was constantly on the back foot, Preston was landing cleanly and counterpunching.

Costello had the loudest fans in the room as it seems that half the venue was filled with her supporters. Unfortunately, her trainer was not able to fly over with her for the fight, however, she had experienced trainer Grant Arkell cornering her for this fight. Arkell is well known for training many great boxers including Joseph Parker.

Preston is expected to fight again in September on the next King in the Ring card against Thailand boxer Phannaluk Kongsang. This was the original fight that was scheduled, however, it was postponed due to visa issues. It is expected that Preston will defend her newly won title against Phannaluk Kongsang. Costello will more likely fight in a rematch against Jasmine Parr, however, nothing has been confirmed as of yet.

Both female boxers have made New Zealand proud, as well as the UK and Australia. Costello might have lost the fight, however, she still made history by becoming the first person from the LGBT community to fight for the WBA Oceania title. Preston is expected to receive a top 15 ranking in the WBA after winning the Oceania title. But first, she will be celebrating her daughter's birthday.

© Scoop Media

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