Daniels sisters making their mark in the ring

BEN STRANG
Last updated 05:00 19/07/2014
FIERCE SISTERS: Caroline Daniels, left, and sister Lani are rising through the boxing ranks.
Mark Taylor/Fairfax NZ

FIERCE SISTERS: Caroline Daniels, left, and sister Lani are rising through the boxing ranks.

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There's one thing the Daniels sisters are scared of more than any opponent they face in the ring.

Mum.

Caroline Daniels, 30, and her younger sister Lani, 25, are boxers out of Nabby's Boxing Gym, rising up the New Zealand amateur ranks.

They train hard and are formidable opponents when they step in the ring, but there are some rules they have to follow to keep their mother happy.

''I train every day, apart from Sundays,'' Caroline Daniels explained.

''My family are hard out Mormon, so there's no way I could train on a Sunday. Mum would be furious.''

What would anger her even more would be if the sisters stepped into the ring to fight each other, and that's not going to happen.

Much like the Ukranian heavyweight boxers Vitali and Wladimir Klitschko, the sisters' mum prevents the two going head to head.

End of story.

''I guess it is a bit like the Klitschko brothers. Mum would rage if we ever fought against each other, and we decided early on that we would never fight each other.

''It makes it harder at tournaments and that sort of thing, but we get around it.''

Caroline Daniels got into boxing about two years ago, initially as part of a charity boxing night.

After training for that night she was hooked, and joined Nabby's Boxing Gym for regular training.

It helped shed weight, and also release some of the competitive juices she had building up.

Soon after sister Lani Daniels decided to join as well, and has made huge strides in her time at the gym.

Now Caroline Daniels is a Golden Gloves open heavyweight champion, winning the North Island champs this year when she wasn't meant to fight, while Lani finished second in the novice grade.

Competing in Taupo, Caroline Daniels was technically a novice, but wasn't fighting because of illness, allowing her sister to challenge for honours in the novice grade.

However a spot opened up late in the open class, and she stepped up to take out the title.

''It was pretty special considering I wasn't supposed to be fighting.

''We made a thing that we wouldn't fight each other in a real fight, so I wasn't going to fight in the novice grade.

''To go into the open grade and get a win - [Coach Dion McNabney] just put me in, and it was all about experience. It was a surprise to win it.''

Now the women are targeting the national championships later this year, but will fight different weight grades to make sure they avoid each other.

From there, Caroline Daniels is hoping to take her boxing as far as possible, but laments the fact she got into boxing so late.

''I'd love to go to Olympics or something, but I'm already 30.

''Lani has a bit more time, being only 25. She could go on to big things I reckon."

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