Whether she’s changing people’s appearance or changing the way people look at her, Tina Rahimi can’t help but get noticed.
It all started when Rahimi was making a living enhancing women’s facial features at her former job as a makeup artist.
“I just like to make people look good,” she said.
“I always look at someone and think I can improve their features in some way. I loved doing that and making other women feel good when they go to a wedding or a opportunity.
But now yes a boxer in search of gold at the Commonwealth Games in BirminghamRahimi started rearranging people’s faces – in a much less subtle way.
She has a knack for it too, reaching the semi-finals of the women’s featherweight division in Birmingham, where she will face Nigeria’s Elizabeth Oshoba on Sunday morning.
“I came here for the gold and I’m going to do everything there to make sure I get it,” Rahimi said.
“I know all the athletes in my division are amazing, but I’m going to give my best.”
Rahimi isn’t just fighting for herself, she has a greater cause. As Australia’s first female Muslim boxer, who wears a hijab in all of her fights, she hopes to show other young Muslim girls that they can play sports and respect their faith.
“I know now that I am a role model and an inspiration, especially to Muslim women,” she said. “I show them that you can do anything with the hijab to achieve your dreams. It’s important to show them that you have to go out and be active.
“A lot of people don’t feel comfortable going out in the hijab. They feel like they don’t want to do sports or anything because people are going to look at them funny or how they look bad. dress.
“Now they see me on a public stage doing what I love and playing sports and showing them that anything is possible and who really cares what people think of you.”
Rahimi is one of five Australian boxers already guaranteed to win medals in Birmingham after reaching the semi-finals.
Kaye Scott, a restrained dancer who won a welterweight bronze medal at the last Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast in 2018, is in the light middleweight semi-final against Alcinda Panguana of Mozambique.
At 38, she has hinted that this will be her last Commonwealth Games, so she wants a taste of a winner.
“I’m an old maid – but I always beat all the youngsters and get first place, so that’s another kind of stereotype that I’m trying to break,” she said.
Gold Coast middleweight silver medalist Caitlin Parker also advances to the final four in her division, where she faces Canada’s Tammara Thibeault.
Australia has two men qualified for the medal round.
Teenage middleweight Callum Peters has been very impressive so far and will take on South Africa’s Simnikwe Bongco – unfazed that he is one of the youngest fighters in the Games.
“Young and beautiful, you mean!” I told reporters. “It’s an amazing opportunity and I want it to matter. I’m going for gold.
Australian heavyweight Edgardo Coumi tackles Lewis Hamilton of England knowing his opponent will have the support of the crowd.
Australian boxers qualify for Commonwealth Games semi-finals
Originally published as Commonwealth Games 2022: Tina Rahimi one of five Australian boxers guaranteed to win medals