THE WORLD GAMES ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: THE RACE IS ON!

Online vote for MUAYTHAI’s Monika Chochlikova until 31st January to determine the ‘Best of Birmingham’

Ready, set, go: The International World Games Association (IWGA) has now launched its online votes for the Athlete and Team of the Year 2022. Until 31st January (12 GMT), supporters and friends of The World Games can cast a vote daily for the top athlete and the top team. Voting is available online on the IWGA website: www.theworldgames.org

23 athletes and 12 teams, proposed by their International Federations, are running for the titles Athlete of the Year or Team of the Year. They all took part in the 11th edition of The World Games in Birmingham, USA last summer. On the IWGA website, all candidates are introduced with a short report about their achievements and a video.

Each participant in the voting can cast votes for the candidates – either Athlete or Team of the Year or both – once per 24 hours on The World Games website. Each time, votes must be given to two candidates. Two votes are awarded to the first-choice candidate and one vote to the second-choice candidate.

Fans can vote separately for both the Athlete of the Year and the Team of the Year. The current ranking and the number of votes cast for each candidate will be shown on the IWGA voting page as the voting period progresses.

The first round of the voting opened on 10th January at 12 (GMT) and closes on 22nd January (12 GMT) and will determine the finalists: the 10 athletes and 7 teams with the most votes will go through to the final round. This round lasts until 31st January, when the winners will be announced. The winners will receive trophies and prizes.

Vote Muaythai! Vote for Monika!!

Monika started doing sport at very young age. She started in gymnastics, than karate which shepracticed for 10 years.  When she turned 16 she tried her first muaythai training and immediately knew that she had found the right sport for her. A few years later she transferred to Kickboxing due  to suffering lower back issues that doctors advised would be exacerbated if she continued to train with clinching, a key technique in the sport of muaythai. Therefore, Monika’s first successes were in
kickboxing.

 In 2016 she became the first Slovakian woman to win the WAKO European championship title. One year later she participated in theWorld Games in Wroclaw and brought home a silver medal in kickboxing.

In 2018, after two years of battling back problems, she entered the IFMA European Championships for the first time and surprisingly won the gold and was awarded Female Rising Star of the
tournament.

In 2019 she went to her first IFMA World championship in Bangkok and won a bronze medal. After two wins she lost in the semi-final with the IFMA Asian Beach Games champion from Vietnam Bui Yen Li. A few days after that she returned from Thailand and went to Croatia for the EUSA European championship in kickboxing and won the tournament in the upper weight class category. That same year she attended the WAKO World championship and after 4 wins, became a World champion Kickboxer.

The following year due to pandemic situation she started doing MMA, in which she has currently racked up 3 fights. The first one was held in Italy on Bellator MMA in 2020 where she won by submission after just 4 weeks of training MMA.

In 2021 she won a World Muaythai Council title belt where she defeated Funda Alkayis from Turkey and after that, attended both world championships of muaythai and kickboxing. In October she took home a silver medal in kickboxing, and in December she finally claimed the gold at the IFMA World
championship to become the first Slovakian who ever win an IFMA World Championships tournament.

Thanks to these 2 successes she qualified to the World Games 2022 in two sports – kickboxing and muaythai.

“Kickboxing and Muaythai were held right after each other. Unfortunately, I lost my first fight in kickboxing very controversialy and didn´t have the chance to win any medal. But after all I think it was like it was meant to be, because I had 1 free day before fights in muaythai and I could regenerate my body a little bit and prepare for muaythai competition. In quarterfinals I met with an american champion Angela Bahr. It was very close fight- I won the first round, Angela won the second and fortunately it was me, who won the decisive third round. It was Rebecca Hodl who was waiting for me in semifinals. In second round Rebecca was counted by the referee and I advanced to finals where I met with the current world champion in 2022 Meriem El Moubarik from Morroco. It was my dream fight. I think Meriem is one of the best fighters in IFMA and I wanted to fight with her, just to see how my skills are comparing to hers. But there was a little catch. After weigh in I wasn´t feeling well and few moments before we went to the boutwell auditorium I puked and had enormous cramps. With my coach Tomas Tadlanek we were talking if it will be wise to fight with this condition. After few minutes the decision was taken – I will fight. After 3 rounds of many many kicks exchanges I took the gold and became a winner of the word games in 2022. Actually it was the first gold medal for Slovakia after long 13 years. So that´s my story behind the scenes of the World Games.”


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