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One on One Interview with Jacqueline Park!
By Rick McLean
February 12, 2009

     
   
   
   
   

(FEB 12) Jacqueline Park of the Bay Area Athletic club located in Burlington Ontario, Canada recently defended her position on Canada’s National amateur team at the 48kg light flyweight division with an impressive 16-0 win over Sandra Chamberland of Quebec and a 24-1 victory over Judy Pereira of Manitoba. Park has won the national title four times and has been a member of the Canadian National team in 2004, 2007, 2008 and 2009.

She said it is an honour to represent Canada at the international level and “winning Nationals four times has been amazing! It has given me the opportunity to fight at many international tournaments against some of the best boxers in the world.” Park has had over 70 bouts in her amateur career thus far. She annually competes at the Ringside World boxing championships in Kansas City, United States and has won the title four times.

Park is coached by Muzammel Nawaz and is a member of TAZ (Team Abu Zayd). Her good friend and fellow amateur boxer Jackie Lachapelle influenced her decision in training at that club. Jacqueline has always wanted to be a boxer however the opportunities were not always there. “I’m not sure why exactly but I have wanted to box since I was 8 or 10 years old unfortunately there weren’t any girls boxing at that time so I had to wait until I was well into my 20’s. Overall, I think it’s the combination of the physical and mental challenges that I love so much and the rush I get each time I step into the ring.”

Away from the ring Park teaches yoga and also runs a small natural health and yoga store within the studio. Park stated that “holistic health, yoga and family are also very important to me. To be honest training, teaching and competing is how I spend most of my time, however I always try to balance this with family and friends. After that, there isn’t much leftover.”

At the AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships in Ningbo City, China which took place in November 2008, Park won her first bout 6-5 over Asian Champion Kalpana Chowdhury of India and her second bout 4-3 over Alice Kate Aparri of the Philippines. However, Jacqueline lost her third bout 8-2 against eventual silver medalist Sarah Ourahmoune of France. Park is hoping to have a rematch with Sarah as well as gold medalist ChenYing of China who she fought in Turkey in June.

Park felt the tournament in China was very well organized and a great experience overall. “We had an amazing team in China and I was proud to be part of that!” On her experiences at international tournaments Park stated: “I know a few of the athletes from other countries because of all the international tournaments I’ve attended. I always make an effort to connect with as many other athletes and coaches as I can once the competition is over. Those memories last forever.”

Jacqueline is happy about the level of competition at the international tournaments. Park stated “the competition definitely gets better every year and this year the worlds had the highest country and athlete entries ever.” In addition, she is pleased with the addition of the extra round which started in 2009. Park is not going to turn pro in the near future -- instead she wants to focus on national and international tournaments and the next World Championships in 2010.

 
     
     
   
 
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