I want to do it again, says a battered and bruised Mia Kang after the swimsuit model wins her first muay thai fight

Back in New York after a win in her muay thai debut, the model is now eyeing a second bout

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 11 May, 2017, 3:35pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 11 May, 2017, 5:58pm

Hong Kong model-turned-muay thai fighter Mia Kang touched down in New York overnight but was still flying high after her professional debut – and knockout victory – at the weekend.

“The first thing I said was ‘I want to do it again’,” said Kang, speaking publically about the fight for the first time. “I’m not completely happy. I didn’t reach my full potential but no fighter does the first time.”

Kang was handed a technical knockout decision against Thai fighter Nong B on Sunday in a bout that was part of a Muay Thai Fight Club card on the island of Koh Samui.

“You know, coming into the ring I had a plan, but when the bell rang, it all went to s***,” said Kang. “She hit me with a big elbow at the end of the first round and that made me mad, basically. She was quicker but I was stronger and I knew I had to win by knockout. My team told me ‘heavy hands’ coming into the third, so that’s what I did. I hit her, hard. I was so pumped up at the end, as soon as they took my mouth guard out I said ‘rematch’ – but my team yelled ‘You’ve won!’”

Round 3 TKO via vicious assault

A post shared by Mia Kang (미아) (@missmiakang) on May 7, 2017 at 9:59am PDT

The Sports Illustrated model captured global attention when she revealed in February that she planned to enter the ring and fight as a pro.

Muay Thai “turned my life around”, Kang said, after years of dealing with body issues and a lack of self-confidence.

Kang admitted to being overcome with nerves as she entered the ring on Sunday against a fighter with five bouts under her belt – but now? “I want more,” said Kang.

From swimsuit model to mixed martial artist: Hong Kong-raised Mia Kang prepares to make her muay thai debut

“To be honest, coming towards the sign all I could think about was the next step, not the fight” said Kang. “When my trainer lifted the rope and I stood up, I thought ‘What the f*** am I doing? Why am I not at home knitting or something? But I’m hooked – much to my dad’s disappointment. The support I had coming in from everyone, and from all over the world, was just incredible.”

And Hong Kong could well be the venue for the 29-year-old’s next fight as Kang revealed on Thursday she had plans to fight in her home town – possibly as part of a Yokkao card that is being scheduled for September 28.

“It would be great to fight back home,” said Kang. “But for now my real work comes first for a while.”

Hong Kong’s Mia Kang on her victory in Sports Illustrated global model contest

Sunday’s fight was filmed for a Sports Illustrated documentary that’s expected to be released towards the end of summer, while Kang has returned to New York and life as one of the world’s most sought-after modelling talents. She said she planned to get in a few amateur muay thai fights and to “keep on developing my skills as a fighter.”

“I haven’t reached my potential – no fighter does after their first fight,” she said. “People who see the fight might come in expecting Conor McGregor. But don’t, please! The stage fright is out of the way so now I can get really serious.”