A female boxer pulled out of a Canadian competition because she was afraid for her safety after learning that her opponent is transgender.
Last month, Dr. Katia Bissonnette from Saguenay says she was matched with transgender fighter Mya Walmsley with only an hour’s notice.
They were supposed to fight in Victoriaville, Quebec, in the 2023 Provincial Golden Glove Championship.
But Bissonnette pulled out at the last minute when she found out who her opponent was. Because they couldn’t find anyone else in the same weight class to replace her, Walmsley was named the winner by default.
Bissonnette told Reduxx, “Women shouldn’t have to deal with the physical and mental risks that come from a man’s choices about his personal life and identity.” “Biological male and female should be the two groups.”
She also talked about a study from the University of Utah that said guys can punch 163% harder than women.
Studies that looked at how strong transgender women are show that hormone blockers might slightly lessen this biological advantage.
Boxing Canada says that a trans fighter’s gender shouldn’t be made public if they transitioned before puberty to protect them from being discriminated against.
Bissonnette said Walmsley is from Australia and that no one knows her background.
She says Walmsley’s file shows that she has had “zero fights as a woman” in Canada.
Walmsley, for her part, has criticised Bissonnette for calling her out in public instead of talking to her personally about the problem.
Walmsley said in a statement, “This kind of behaviour puts athletes at risk of being kicked out or getting personal attacks based on hearsay.”
“I’m afraid that this kind of accusation could be used in the future to discredit female athletes and support rules that are unfair and intrusive.”
The graduate student in philosophy told La Presse that she had not changed her mind and that the whole thing had made her feel like a “political object.”
She pushed for coaches and players to be trusted to choose the right gender categories for themselves.
Before, the International Olympic Committee said that transwomen could participate in the same categories as women as long as they kept their testosterone levels below a certain level.
But Walmsley said she didn’t have to check her levels before signing up for the tournament.
She said that the “arbitrary and invasive” tests would not help and that these tests should not be required.
The controversy has brought up the question of how to best handle transgender athletes in sports again.
It comes after Fallon Fox, the first openly transgender mixed martial arts fighter, said she had broken a female opponent’s bone during a fight before she quit the sport.
Fox said that breaking an orbital bone, like Tamika Brents did, is a regular injury in the sport for both men and women.