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Published: Wednesday September 18, 2013 MYT 8:31:00 PM
Updated: Wednesday September 18, 2013 MYT 8:33:43 PM

Athena ready for Total Domination

PETALING JAYA: One doesn’t just get a fight name - it has to be earned.

And for Malaysia’s first-ever Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighter Ann Osman, earning the fight name “Athena” was no walk in the park.

It was only after a few amateur bouts that her trainer AJ “Pyro” Lias Mansor conferred on her the name Athena after the patron Greek goddess of heroic endeavours.

“It’s definitely a kick-ass name, but I don’t go around calling myself Athena. It’s more a testament to my character,” said Ann when met at the MuayFit fitness centre in Dataran 3 Two Square in Petaling Jaya.

“I’m still a girly girl at heart. I love to go for massages and paint my nails, but when I’m in the cage, that’s all on the back-burner and I’m ready to take care of business,” added Ann, who specialises in Muay Thai.

The 27-year-old from Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, is due to make her professional debut in the One Fighting Championships in One FC: Total Domination in Singapore on Oct 18 where she goes up against fellow debutant Sherilyn Lim of Singapore in the catchweight bout.

“As soon as I was offered the fight, I grabbed it. It’s an opportunity of a lifetime, so thank you One FC ... I’m living my dream,” she exclaimed.

Ann, who fights out of the Borneo Tribal Squad gym, admitted not knowing much about her opponent.

“It’s not that I don’t care but One FC is huge. Reading up about your opponent is just a small portion of what needs to be done to prepare yourself for a fight. And right now, I’m concentrating on getting into the best condition I can and giving it my all in Singapore,” added Ann, who admires UFC’s welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre for being “a complete fighter” and former MMA figther Gina Carano “as the perfect combination of fierce, yet feminine”.

The self-confessed adrenaline junkie who counts her heavy-handed strikes as one of her strengths also boasts a lethal combination of brain and brawn.

Besides having a penchant for extreme sports like hiking, kayaking, mountain biking and white water rafting, she was also a straight-As student and made the Dean’s List during her time at the Shahputra College where she took up a Diploma in Computer Science.

When she’s not training and fighting, Ann works as the regional business development manager for a real estate media company.

“It’s tough juggling work and training, especially when it’s close to a fight. On average, I put in six to seven hours of training a day with more hours on the weekend. But that is doubled or even tripled when I have a fight coming up,” she said.

“My fiance, family and friends have been really supportive and that’s helped drive my ambition further. I’m in this for the long haul. As long as my body can take it, I’m going to keep training and fighting,

“But for now, I want to get that win under my belt and then it’s all about moving forward.”

The One FC: Total Domination fight card will also feature two other Malaysia-Singapore bouts, with Malaysia’s Mar Marcellinus and Alex Lim taking on Singapore’s debutant Stephen Langdown and Juan Wen Jie respectively.

Tags / Keywords: Mixed Martial Arts, MMA, Ann Osman, Athena, One Fighting Championships, One FC, Total Domination

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