||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (May 2008)|
|Real name||Lucia Fredeca Rijker|
|Nickname(s)||The Dutch Destroyer|
|Height||1.69 m (5 ft 6 1⁄2 in)|
December 6, 1967 |
|Wins by KO||14|
Rijker has been dubbed by the press and opponents "The Most Dangerous Woman in the World". She can speak four languages and is a Buddhist, dedicating time daily to meditation and chanting. Her mother was born in the Netherlands and her father is from Suriname.
Rijker started her martial arts career at the early age of six, when she began training in judo. A year later, she was part of the Dutch National Softball Team. At fourteen, after picking up fencing a year earlier, Lucia became the Netherlands Junior Champion of that sport.
After winning her first 14 fights, but failing to secure a match with Christy Martin, Rijker stepped away from boxing in 1999 to pursue a career in Hollywood. She appeared as Billie 'The Blue Bear' in 2004's Oscar-winning, female boxer-based film Million Dollar Baby. She was also featured in the documentary film Shadow Boxers. She played a minor role in Rollerball (2002 film) and had a brief cameo in the season 2 finale of The L Word as Dana's trainer. She returned to The L Word in Season 5 as Dusty, Helena's cellmate in prison. Rijker also played a Romulan communications officer in the film Star Trek.
Return to the ring
She returned to the ring in February 2002, beating Jane Couch (20-4 going in; 25-6 as of December 2004) by decision (eight rounds) on June 21, 2003 for her 16th win. Win number 17 was a ten-round decision over "Sunshine" Fettkether on May 20, 2004.
Rijker and Christy Martin were scheduled to fight on July 30, 2005 at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. Major U.S. promoter Bob Arum (Top Rank Boxing's head) had made their match the main event of a card (with otherwise male boxing matches) called "Million Dollar Lady". Each woman was guaranteed $250,000 (U.S.), with the winner receiving an extra $750,000; however, on July 20, it was announced that she had ruptured an Achilles tendon while training for the fight; recovery time was estimated to be 4–7 months. The match was ultimately cancelled.
As of February 2007, she was undefeated in the ring; her boxing record is 17-0 (14 K.O.'s), and her kickboxing record is 37-0 (25 K.O.'s), conquering five world titles in the process. She met her only defeat in October 1994 at an exhibition Muay Thai kickboxing match against a male opponent, Somchai Jaidee of New Zealand (a 2nd-round K.O.).
Rijker has been on the cover of numerous magazines including Inside Kung Fu. As a professional boxer, she has won the WIBF Welterweight Title, and has beaten name fighters such as Marcela Acuña (5th-round K.O.; Acuña was 0-1 going into the fight, and 19-4 as of June 2005), and Deborah "Sunshine" Fettkether (10th-round decision; Fettkether was 8-4-3 going in).
She remains busy giving lectures and seminars to athletes and people from all walks of life to perform their best, while still maintaining her top physical form and a strict diet.
Rijker once again gained media attention in June 2013, when she worked in the corner of female boxing challenger Diana Prazak in her WBC super featherweight title bout against local champion Frida Wallberg in Stockholm. Wallberg, ahead on all scorecards, had been knocked down twice by Prazak in the eighth round prompting the referee to stop the fight, and after a brief look by ringside doctor, started to collapse in her corner. Rijker immediately realized the seriousness of the situation, and called the doctor back to the ring while herself and Prazak assisted Wallberg. Wallberg had to be carried from the ring on a stretcher to hospital, and underwent surgery with a cerebral hemorrhage. The events sparked controversy about the level of the provided medical attention, and reignited debates about banning boxing in Sweden.
- Women's Boxing: LUCIA RIJKER
- Holden, Stephen (2000-05-12). "FILM REVIEW; Gotta Psych Yourself Up To Win at This Game". www.nytimes.com. Retrieved 2008-06-24.
- ESPN - Entire card off after Rijker ruptures Achilles tendon - Boxing
- Horgan, Dan (2006-09-05). "Lucia Rijker: Hey Laila, "I’m not officially retired"". www.doghouseboxing.com. Retrieved 2008-02-04.
- Lucia Rijker Official Website News Section
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