Marcela Acuña

Marcela Eliana Acuña (born October 16, 1976 in Formosa) is an Argentine female boxer, who is nicknamed La Tigresa. Her mother wished for Acuña to become a ballerina, but that was never Acuña's dream.

Acuña enjoyed boxing from a very early age. At the age of seven, she visited a boxing gym for the first time. Her first trainer, Ramon Chaparro, would many years later become her husband.

Marcela Acuña became an accomplished martial arts fighter before she decided to box for money. At the age of twelve, she had earned a black belt and she became South America's champion in her division by the age of fourteen. She made sixteen successful title defenses.

She had to retire from karate due to pregnancy. In 1995, she and Chaparro had their first son. After some time away from combat sports, Acuña decided that she would return, only this time, she would compete in boxing.

Like Rafael Lovera, Pete Rademacher, and a few others before her, Acuña got a world title try on her very first match. On December 5, 1997, she was matched against WBC women's world champion Christy Martin, in Pompano Beach, Florida, in an undercard that was headlined by Johnny Tapia's world championship defense against Puerto Rico's Andy Agosto and which was shown nationally across the United States. Acuña was dropped in round ten, but she rose and finished the bout on her feet. Despite losing a unanimous decision by scores of 100-90 and 99-90 (twice), Acuña's performance was hailed by many fans and critics alike, considering that this was her first professional boxing bout.

In a very unusual case, Acuña also got a world title try on her second fight. This time, she met Lucia Rijker on September 25, 1998, at Ledyard, Connecticut. This fight was contested for the WIBO world Jr. Welterweight title. Acuña was knocked out in five rounds.

This would prove to be a critical point in Acuña's boxing career. Controversy spread around the women's boxing world because a woman with no previous boxing experience had been given two world title tries in a row, something that had never even happened in men's boxing. Many defended the choice of putting Acuña against world champions right away, based on her karate record of 17 wins, 1 loss and 1 draw (tie). But, on the other side, other fans and critics felt it was inappropriate and degrading to the sport that someone with no previous experience would be put in against fighters of the quality of Martin and Rijker right away.

The controversy, combined with the fact that she had lost her two fights up until then, convinced Acuña to retire. Apart from the disappointment she felt after those two losses and the controversy surrounding them, she had also given birth to her second son before the fight with Rijker, and she wanted to tend to her children.

sex : female
birth date : 1976-10-16
division : super bantamweight
height : 5′ 4½″ / 164cm
alias : La Tigresa
country : Argentina
residence : Caseros, Buenos Aires, Argentina
birth place: Formosa, Formosa, Argentina
birth name: Marcela Eliana Acuña
won 35 (KO 17) + lost 5 (KO 1) + drawn 0 = 40
rounds boxed 252 KO% 42.5

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