Unbeatable teen boxer Quebec prepares for Canadian Olympics

Don’t let her size fool you — when it comes to boxing, 17-year-old Talia Birch is all about power.

The Quebec teenager recently earned her sixth win in the boxing ring. Not bad because she had never set foot in a place until two years ago.

“I’m obsessed, I’m obsessed with it, so that’s how it happened,” Birch told CTV National News.

“While you’re fighting, nothing really goes through your head, it’s instinct, you just have to act on it.”

She threw her first punch in her basement as a way to stay afloat during the pandemic. Nine months later, she’s wearing gloves for her first match.

Birch was so nervous about competing for the first time that it felt like her legs were going limp before the game.

She said: ‘I couldn’t even warm up because all my air was sucked out of my body due to the stress. “But as soon as the bell rang, the match went smoothly, it was a fun game.”

The undefeated boxer is currently gearing up for the Canadian Olympics on Prince Edward Island later this month, where female fighters will fight for the first time.

“It was crazy,” Birch said. “I’m so excited to be a part of those girls.”

The Canadian Olympics are a multi-sport event with a winter sports version and a summer sports version that alternate every two years. It is the highest national competition for Canadian athletes in sports such as boxing, alpine skiing, karate, archery and fencing, among others.

Birch said: “To think I have come this far is crazy for me.

Her trainer, Jamaal Warner, isn’t all that surprised. He said he saw his protégé’s potential the second they met.

What Birch has is “natural strength,” he told CTV National News.

“The natural ability to throw a punch hard, with ease, (and) tirelessly doing it.”

But her rapid ascent in the sport remains exceptional, he added.

“It was her work ethic,” Garner said. “Her work ethic, willingness and obsession with the sport set her apart. I have never seen anyone else so dedicated.”

Birch said she dreams of going pro and one day wearing a maple leaf at another high-profile tournament—the Olympics.

With files from Alexandra Mae Jones

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