Sport | Boxing

Motu and Daniels look to Whangārei for next fights

Boxing stars Lani Daniels (Ngāti Hine) and Mea Motu (Te Rarawa) are determined to maintain their winning streak as they prepare for their upcoming bout in Whangārei later this year.

“That’s our hometown,” Motu stated during an earlier press conference.

“This event is going to be a complete sellout, especially with just me and Lani headlining it. I’m telling you, people from the entire far north region are going to flock in. They won’t be able to secure a spot. My family is already anxious that they might not make it in. That’s how massive it’s going to be.”

Motu successfully defended her IBO super bantamweight title on Saturday, triumphing over Malawi’s Ellen Simwaka despite sustaining a shoulder injury in the opening round of the 10-round match.

“I felt weakness and restriction. There was pain but the pain doesn’t faze me; it’s a part of boxing,” Motu explained.

Daniels glad to go fulltime

Motu’s coach, Isaac Peach, said her x-ray results were expected today.

“We have an excellent physio... we will rehabilitate her shoulder and push the rehab to its limits. If the injury recurs, we’ll manage it again.”

This event marked the second world title defence of the night. IBF heavyweight champion Lani Daniels proved too skilled for South African contender Razel Mohammed, securing a fourth-round technical knockout victory.

Daniels expressed her gratitude in being able to commit to boxing fulltime. “I’ve never had the chance to fully immerse myself in boxing. I’ve had to balance it part-time due to the necessity of making a living. Nursing was my primary career choice to pay the bills.”

Motu is to compete in Whangārei on December 2. Daniels is hopeful to join her in the ring if a suitable opponent can be found.