Tough questions are asked after a decision victory
At the bell, Sonia Fox takes a deep breath. Round 10 had been a tough round for her. It’s likely to be a loss, but she’s one of the few that can say that they went 10 rounds with Virani MacVicar and never touched the canvas.
Virani heads back to her corner, a single arm raised in triumph. It’s not an over the top celebration by any means, but she got the job done.
Virani thinks: This wasn’t glamorous but it was win.
Sandra Blohm climbs into the ring and takes the mouthpiece of Virani. It’s also time for a brief chat about how things went.
Sandra: “The fans won’t like it, but I really liked what I saw from you those last few rounds. You didn’t give her a chance to get going. And you didn’t take risks at the end. Smart.”
Virani: “I could have finished her off, I’m pretty sure.”
Sandra: “If I wanted you to knock her out, I would have told you. The lesson of this fight is adaptability. You can’t always play the puncher in these fights and hope it bails you out. You need to think. Plus, now that you’ve shown ‘weakness’ your matchmaking gets easier.”
Virani: “So this was all one big plan. You wanted me to go to a decision?”
Sandra: “Other coaches play checkers. I play chess. Plus, don’t you feel a bit more confident knowing that you have an alternative style you can use? One where you don’t get hit a lot? That’s good for your longevity.”
Virani: “I’m still best as a puncher. But yes, I see what you are doing.”
Sandra: “Don’t worry, the knockouts will come. I’m not trying to change your stripes.”
Laila: “Welcome back to the broadcast. We are now ready for the official decision, which we expect confirm Virani MacVicar claiming her first decision victory in more than five years.”
Mechelle: “But be full of praise for Sonia Fox. She gave it everything.”
Ring announcer: “After 10 rounds of action, we go to the judges’ scorecards. All three judges have this one scored 98-92, all for your winner by unanimous decision…Virani ‘The Canadian Cobra’ MacVicar!“
Virani’s arm is raised as the crowd applauds lightly. They wanted their fighter to win, but they were a bit disappointed at the usual violence not being displayed.
Laila: “I’ll be going ringside to chat with both Virani and Sonia, so I’ll leave things in your capable hands, Mechelle.”
Mechelle: “Thanks Laila. Looks like MacVicar and Fox are having a quick chat after the decision. Doesn’t look like there are hard feelings on either side.”
Virani: “Sonia. Girl you are tough! Did you have your jaw replaced with steel or something?”
Sonia: “No. You had me hurt at the end there. Kind of glad you didn’t go for it.”
Virani: “Wasn’t worth the risk. Look. Don’t let this loss hold you back. You’ve got more talent than you know. Get some wins and you’ll be on the upward path in no time.”
Sonia: “Thanks. It was an honour to share the same ring with you – now I know how you knocked all those girls out. That power and speed is something to experience.”
Virani: “Thank you. I think I was just born with it. Anyways, it was a pleasure to share the ring with you, but I’d rather not fight you again. I like girls to fall down or at least look hurt when I hit them with my best punches. Good luck in the future.”
Sonia: “Thanks. Good luck to you as well. I’ll be watching your fights for sure.”
It’s time for interviews. Laila Ali first meets with Virani.
Laila: “Virani, a victory here tonight, but some would say it’s not your most impressive performance. What were your thoughts.”
Virani: “I’d say that those people don’t know boxing at all. And let’s give a little credit to my opponent, Sonia Fox. I can’t just walk up and knock out a fighter like that. I landed some really good punches, and I didn’t end up hurting her with them. I can’t just magically change that. But overall, I’m happy with my performance. A victory is a victory is a victory.”
Laila: “You were told to switch gears about halfway through the fight. You showed a different side of yourself in the second half. Is that something we’ll see more with you?”
Virani: “I think flexibility is something that is important. I am not a one-dimensional fighter. That being said, I think we all know what I’m best at.”
Laila: “This is the second fight with your new coach. Are you at the level you want to be at the moment?”
Virani: “I would love to be world champion, but there’s about 50 other fighters who would say the same thing. I think we all know this is a process.”
Laila: “Any plans for what is coming next?”
Virani: “Nope. My coach has a plan and I’ll execute it. Fortunately, though, I boxed 10 rounds I came through it pretty unscathed so I can get back in the ring fairly quickly and I think that has to be the goal.”
Laila: “Thank you, Virani.”
Sonia Fox is up next to have the spotlight with Laila.
Laila: “Sonia Fox. How good does it feel to be the only fighter to ever go 10 rounds with Virani MacVicar?”
Sonia: “I’d like to tell you it feels great, but the truth is, my face hurts.”
The candid response draws a laugh from the crowd.
Laila: “You took some of Virani’s best shots, some of which looked liked the ones that had knocked out her prior opponents, and you just kept coming forward. Was it as bad as it looked?”
Sonia: “Probably! But I’ve always had the ability to shake off punches. It comes from being in a tough line of work. When you are a firefighter, you have to be able to push through pain, so I get lots of practice. Easier to run into a fire than get 10 rounds of punches from Virani MacVicar though.”
Laila: “You are the American champion, but I think everyone would like to see you take on Tanille Taylor again.”
Sonia: “I’d love to see it too. Her camp haven’t said much about a fight, so I assume they don’t want it. I think I learned a lot from that fight and the result would be different next time.”
Laila: “We will be happy to see you again. Sonia Fox, everyone!”