Fotu Maria Taula says boxing victory represents her and her family.
Samoan mum Fotu Maria Taula has made history, taking out New Zealand's first South Pacific Women’s Corporate belt in boxing.
Taula won the title earlier this month in Auckland, beating opponent Ana Taumalolo.
Taula grew up in South Auckland’s Otara and is proud of the sporting accomplishment, saying it represents her and her family.
“It's not just a belt, it's a belt that clips together all of me from my Aiga (family) to my people. I wear it with Fa’aaloalo (respect).”
The fighter in her filters through all aspects of her life, from her journey as a mother to other struggles she's had to face.
“I used to be big, and after having my daughter I felt depressed and that was my turning point.”
After that turning point, Taula created her own Boxfit business ‘Passion Boxing’ where she coaches women of all ages, shapes, and sizes.
She shares the space with them not just physically, but also mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
“We start with a prayer, this is an outlet for most of the women who come through, where they let everything out through boxing.
“I get to glorify [God] and use the talent he's gifted to me to share in boxing.”
Alpha Boxing owner Adrian Toa Taihia created the South Pacific Corporate boxing platform so that Pasifika men and women could be recognised more widely in the sport.
“We get overshadowed by all the other boxing purists.
“I hope to see both Maria and Ana back in the ring, they are both great sportswomen who have led the way for other Pacific women to enter.”
For Taula, her hard work in and out of the ring is also for her five-year-old daughter.
She says her passion in life, her passion in the ring, and her passion for her girl are the backbone of everything she has accomplished so far.
Taula wants to leave a legacy for her daughter so that when she grows up and finds her own passion, she will know that anything is possible.
Hero Image: Samoan mum Fotu Maria Taula has won New Zealand's first South Pacific Women’s Corporate belt in boxing. Photo/Grace Tinetali-Fiavaai