Fighters muscle up for the showdown

By Amelia Wade

They're both training up to seven days a week for hours at a time, have chosen their outfits and have had their noses bloodied - and they're ready for tomorrow night's fight.

At yesterday's final press conference, Jaime Ridge and Rosanna Arkle couldn't have been more different - in personality, looks, degrees of confidence, attire and entourage.

The blonde, dressed in a sweatshirt, baggy trackpants and trainers with messy curls, was flanked by mum Sally Ridge who took photos on her iPhone.

The university student and part-time model was softly spoken. She said she wanted to let her performance in the ring speak for itself.

"I'm just waiting to speak about it after the fight - I don't really have much to say to be honest. I'll just let my performance do the talking," Ridge, 18, said.

Meanwhile her 23-year-old brunette opponent happily showed off her newly-formed biceps. Arkle showed up perfectly manicured, with sleek straight hair and wearing a short, tight skirt which showed off her stockings with a garter design.

The GC star's black stilettos helped overcome the 3.5cm height difference between her and Ridge.

"She's just a person and I'm just a person. We're both new to this and it's going to be interesting for the both of us," said Arkle, who said she is the strongest she's "ever been".

Unlike the verbal sparring of smack-talk between professional boxers Shane Cameron and Monte Barrett, the only visible tension between the pair was when a sports journalist asked Arkle why she wasn't going to use breast protection like other female boxers.

"I could, I could put some metal plates in there," the brunette said gesturing to her bright blue bikini top which was chosen by a radio competition and revealed yesterday morning.

Ridge scoffed, rolled her eyes then steadied her reaction by taking a sip of water.

Her fight night outfit will be all black - perhaps as a throwback to her father's old All Black uniform.

In fact, straight after she told her dad, Matthew Ridge, that she was going to get into the ring, he texted her trainer, Monty Beetham, and told him to look after her.

And that he has.

Ridge, who admitted before training that she hadn't really been an athlete, has been training six days a week, sometimes seven, often with two training sessions a day. The workouts are up to two hours.

But even after all that hard work, Ridge is trying not to get overconfident.

"I kind of just want to get in there and do what I've been taught and try not to feel confident or too scared," she said. "At the end of the day, you know, I've been taught what I've been taught and I've just got my skills so we'll see how it all plays out."

- NZ Herald

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