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Tatiana Kob: I wouldn't let my daughter practicing boxing

Tatiana Kob
Tatiana Kob won gold on the 2009 European Championships in Nikolaev

European champion in the category 55kg, Tatiana Kob of Ukraine tells about herself.

Русская версия

Congratulations with the gold medal!

Thanks. I can't believe that I am a champion! We have a great family celebration today. My family is big – I have three brothers and two sisters. On September 25 I will be 22. My mom is so happy that she literally licked me all over. We will have a modest dinner – we don't have money for a grand dinner.

Is this championship your first?

No, Two years ago, I participated in the European championship and was the fifth. I was unfairly judged in my bout against a Romanian boxer. But on the next international tournament in Turkey I defeated her. I was also the fifth in the world championship in China I 2008. So this gold is my first in international competitions. I have imagined many times how I would go through and win. And I got it!

Why did you choose boxing, a sport traditionally not for women?

I was growing as an ever-active girl. Since my early childhood, I've been in sports practicing basketball and volleyball… but I wanted something tougher. I got into a boxing gym by accident. My girl friend and I were passing by a boxing gym and just came to see what a boxing training looked like. First, I asked if the training was paid – my parents had been unable to pay, they made both ends meet. The boxing lessons turned out to be free. So, I felt an urge to practice boxing. I didn't tell that to my parents – didn't want to upset them. For two years, my mom didn't know that her daughter was practicing boxing. I hid the boxing gloves under my bed. Bruises? But I was a tomboy, so nobody was surprised. Once my sister noticed the gloves in my bag. I could hardly convince her not to betray. I was 16 when I won the bronze in the Ukrainian championship - it was in Nikolayev, by the way. So, my mom learned everything from media.

Do you have a boy-friend?

Yes, his name is Roman. We met in a community college which I graduated from with honors. My occupation was a construction plasterer. At the beginning, Roman didn't know I practiced boxing. But his friend told him. He made hints about marriage but I said: "Until the Olympics in 2012, I don't want to hear about marriage'. Currently, I am a student of Lutsk university, my major is physical culture.

Did you have a chance to work in construction?

Very little. It is very hard and harmful dusty work… But if someone needs help with renovation, I can assist. Almost all year I attend training session, preparing to competitions. My trainer Viktor Rogatin gave just a week for rest. Then I will start training again. In Kovel, I spar only with guys. Do they spare me? No, the other way around. My trainer tells guys: "Do not spare her. Punch her!"

Do your have a problem with keeping weight?

Thanks God, I am OK with this. I train so hard in the gym that there is no extra weight left. I train six days a week. Sometimes I have two training sessions a day. Then I have to help my mom at home. So, there is no time for going out.

Do your siblings live separately?

No, we love all together in four room apartment. My parents, we – their adult children and two nephews. My parents have been worked hard all their life – my mother was a construction worker, my father is a driver.

Ten people in four room apartment?

The more the merrier. I share the bed with my younger daughter; next to us my younger brother's bed. I come home late exhausted. Mom often reproaches me with training too hard and not doing much at home. I promise to have time…

For boxers, it is in the order of things to have broken noses. Did you have traumas?

God has been merciful to me. I am afraid to break my small nose. Crossing fingers - my teeth are OK.

You will get married one day and will have kids. Would you let your daughter practice boxing?

Honestly no. It's better for a girl to practice gymnastics of dancing. If my parents had money for dancing classes, would I become a boxer?

Evgeny Banzha
September 23, 2009

Tatiana Kob

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