Transgender Boxer Wins First Professional Fight

Historic win Patricio Manuel becomes first transgender male to fight professionally in US

Historic win Patricio Manuel becomes first transgender male to fight professionally in US

"I told him I would support him 100% in whatever he chose to do", Manuel's mother told The Los Angeles Times.

The 34-year-old and former U.S. Olympic boxing hopeful not only made his professional fighting debut and beat Hugo Aguilar by unanimous decision at Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio, California, on Saturday, but he made history, becoming the first transgender male to fight professionally in the United States.

"I've got some naysayers in here", Manuel said, referencing boos from the audience in a video interview after the match.

"I think if people knew what it took to get to this moment, it's been nearly two years since I've been in a ring", Manuel said after his victory.

"The best part of tonight - once I got to the arena and starting getting ready, get the adrenaline rushing, step through those ropes, [greet] my opponent - I loved it all", he added. He came here to fight. Three opponents refused to fight him after learning of his trans identity. It's OK, I'll be back. I'm just really happy. "I've got some neigh-sayers out there and I've got to prove that I deserve to be in here".

It said scars from surgery were visible on Manuel's chest and abdomen when he stepped into the ring.

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"I'm not in here just for one show or one fight", he said.

"Everyone who has been along for this journey over the past six years, thank you so much". I couldn't be here without you.

Manuel fought in the 2012 US Olympic trials as a female, but a shoulder injury spelled the end of a bid to make the team for the London Games after just one bout.

Once Manuel made it through his transition and found a new gym, he started training again. He [Aguilar] fought me as a man. He later lost a fight that same year, before turning professional. When the Olympic Committee ruled that female-to-male athletes could compete ahead of the Rio Olympics in 2016, however, the California State boxing commission eventually agreed to approve his amateur boxing license. In his first bout without headgear and with smaller, lighter eight-ounce gloves, Manuel charged out of his corner and tested Aguilar with four left jabs before the Mexican could throw a punch.

Golden Boy president Eric Gomez told the Los Angeles Times before the fight that he hadn't spoken to Manuel about doing more fights.

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