Sport | Boxing

Eight-year-old secret weapon behind IBO world champ

Ahead of her next title defence in December this year, IBO Super Bantamweight world champion Mea Motu will be working with her eight-year-old trainer Zen Peach.

“We will be working on that left hand and, when the right hand gets better, we will drill it hard,” Zen says.

Zen is the son of Isaac Peach, who also trains and manages the world champion from his West Auckland gym Peach Boxing.

“Zen’s at every training but we don’t train her together,” Isaac says.

“I don’t tell him what to do. He does it. He corrects her stuff and has his own ideas. We do it entirely separately.”

Motu has suffered family violence in the past but Isaac Peach believes it’s had little effect on her skill as a boxer.

“I get really frustrated with people crediting her success to the fact that she got beaten up by an idiot. I think it’s crap. I think Mea is a success story, a great person and she went through a rough time but now she has come through the other side and she is who she is meant to be.”

Motu recently defended her title against South Africa’s Ellen Simwaka by decision in a 10-round brawl, where she suffered a right shoulder injury - something Zen has his eyes on as they prepare for Chandi Mehra of India on December 2nd at McKay Stadium in Whangārei.

“We will be resting that right hand and focusing on the left hand and when the right hand gets better we will drill it hard!”