Now Reading
Trans boxer Patricio Manuel wins historic debut professional fight

Trans boxer Patricio Manuel wins historic debut professional fight

Pat Manuel

The first trans boxer to compete in the US has won his professional debut by a unanimous decision.

Patricio Manuel made history by besting super Mexican super-featherweight Hugo Aguilar in 12-minutes at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, California.

Manuel, 33, fought his last female fight during the U.S. Olympic Trials in 2012, and began transitioning to male soon afterward.

‘I wouldn’t trade any of it,’ the Los Angeles Times reported Manuel saying. ‘It was worth everything I went through to get to this point.

‘I’m a professional boxer now,’ he added.

However, Manuel’s victory also courted controversy, with fans booing the boxer during his post-match speech.

In response, Manuel said: ‘I hear some fans aren’t happy. It’s OK, I’ll be back. I’ll make them happy then.’

The long road to victory

Manuel’s six-year journey to his victory in California was filled with both physical and emotional hurdles the boxer had to overcome.

His transition involved undergoing surgery and hormone treatment while navigating through seemingly limitless amounts of bureaucracy and red tape involved in being licensed to fight.

Along the way, Manuel lost his coach and a training venue after neither were willing to train with the boxer upon learning he was transgender.

California’s boxing authorities were hesitant to grant a license to Manuel.

However, in 2016 the International Olympic Committee allowed trans athletes to compete without requiring surgery first. This effectively cleared the way for Manuel to compete as a professional boxer.

Manuel’s opponent in his debut fight, Aguilar, learned that Manuel was transgender two days prior to their fight, but said that this was not a problem.

‘For me, it’s very respectable,’ Aguilar said. ‘It doesn’t change anything for me. In the ring, he wants to win and I want to win too.’

More from Gay Star News

American swimmer Abrahm DeVine comes out: ‘I’m a gay athlete’

CrossFit announces trans athletes will be welcome to compete in their 2019 Games

Gay college athlete disowned – then strangers step in with over $77k