Born in Leeds, Nicola Adams became the first British female boxer to win a medal in a major tournament when she came away with silver at the 2007 European Championships in Denmark. Since then, Adams fighter has continued to write her name into the record books, claiming the first Olympic women’s boxing medal in history at London 2012. She then added the Commonwealth Games title in 2014, taking the women’s flyweight title on a split decision, before becoming European Games Champion during the inaugural event at Baku 2015.
In her latest blog, Nicola Adams reflects on becoming World Champion, completing the full set of major titles and the impact boxing legend Muhammad Ali had on her career
See more of her profile by clicking here
I did it. I’m world champion. It was absolutely amazing to get that win finally. I’d got two silver medals from previous World Championships but now I have finally got the world title and completed the set of World, European Amateur and European Games, and Commonwealth and Olympic gold medals – it feels amazing.
The Worlds themselves were a really good experience. I was an ambassador for the event, which was a real honour, and Kazakhstan put on a really good competition, it was huge. The arena, the preparation, the organisation of the whole tournament was superb.
I’m fairly experienced now so I know most of my competitors, there were a few there that I hadn’t seen before but I was ready for anything and came away with the win.
Having that world medal can send me out to Rio and the Olympic Games full of confidence now and I’m really looking forward to it.
The high of winning that title was amazing but waking up on June 4 to hear Muhammad Ali had died was heartbreaking.
He said he was ‘The Greatest’ and he really was. He was the greatest boxer that ever lived.
I never got to meet him unfortunately but he was a great person inside and outside of the ring and he will definitely be missed by a lot of people.
My favourite memory of him is the Rumble in the Jungle fight against George Foreman in 1974. I’m the sort of person who goes back and watches the old classic fights and that one is definitely my favourite.
He was a very special character and I’m not sure there’ll ever be anyone like him again. He was one of my heroes and there are things about the way he fought that I try and bring to my style – I even did the Ali shuffle during a fight at London 2012.
The things that he brought to the ring like the hand-speed, the fast feet, are things that I practice every day in training.
My hand-speed and footwork are some of my biggest assets and his were phenomenal.
He once said that ‘he who is not courageous enough to take risks, will never accomplish anything in life’.
And I think he’s right.
For me, going into women’s boxing was a risk. It wasn’t an Olympic sport when I first got into it, but I love the sport and I was prepared to take that risk to live out my dreams, and it’s come true.