Trail Blazing Wild Thing

Sharon Anyos smashed down barriers in sport and life for women no-one thought possible and long after her amazing boxing career finished, she continues to inspire men and women around the globe and particularly in her native Australia. The first thing that struck me when I had the privilege and honour to meet this inspiring lady, was the warmth, enthusiasm and sincerity of her personality. No hand shakes, instead a big warm hug as she introduced herself and her equally beautiful four sons.

Fourteen year-old twins Jai and Cruz, 11 year-old Will and 10 year-old Tyler are just as welcoming and polite, obviously a credit to their mum’s nurturing. Entertaining the boys while we did the interview was her inspiring dad and former boxing coach Les Anyos, a legend in his own right on the martial arts scene and boxing and in particular karate.

There is no pretence, she is genuine and myself and my absolutelyfamous colleague Tony Stretch were immediately at ease speaking to Sharon like she was just a cruisy cool unpretentious Aussie lady having a casual chat about life.

Hard to believe that this same lady, a genuine rock star of boxing, was one of the most feared female boxers of all time on the world stage and one of the most successful, as she punched and kicked her way to international stardom during her 20s and 30s. At a soccer stadium in England where she fought one of her pro boxing fights, 100,000 fans showed up to see her

Aussie boxing legend Jeff Fenech once refused to recognise or support women’s boxing, that is until he saw Sharon fight and completely changed his outlook then jumped at the opportunity to coach her.

Stepping into the boxing, kick-boxing or karate combat fight ring she went to war and most of the time came out victorious and along the way opened the door for women fighters that seemingly were never going to open. Her eventual coach, another Aussie boxing legend Jeff Fenech once refused to recognise or support women’s boxing, that is until he saw Sharon fight and completely changed his outlook then jumped at the opportunity to coach her.

Her glittering fight career was highlighted by becoming the first ever WBC (World Boxing Council) World champion when she beat Argentine fighter Marcela Acuma on the Gold Coast in 2005 to win the newly created featherweight crown.

She rates that fight as probably her toughest as she sustained a broken finger in round two then suffered a broken cheek bone in round seven but carried on for an amazing history making world first triumph.

Watching classic fights between Marvelous Marvin Hagler and Sugar Ray Leonard, as preparation, Sharon described herself as a Marvin Hagler style fighter but that wasn’t going to work against the tough Argentinian.
 “I was Marvin Hagler style. I would just walk up and punch and punch and punch but I had to learn to be like Sugar Ray a bit.”
 

In total she fought 17 times on the professional circuit at the highest level, winning 14 including five World crowns, four by knockout. She was inducted into the International women’s boxing Hall of Fame in 2020 but due to covid wasn’t able to go over to the USA and receive the award. She hopes to do that in October next year.

Queen of the Ring

On March 6 next year Sharon will be inducted into and Australian Boxing Hall of Fame, once again the first women to be accorded this great honour.

In 2007 she received yet another world first for Aussie women, being awarded a coveted WBC World Emeritus title, a title reserved only for the very best, a role call of which includes Kosta Tszyu, Lennox Lewis, Floyd Mayweather, Vitali Klitschko and Laila Ali among others.

Prior to her brilliant boxing career she was equally lethal at kick-boxing, Sharon fought 10 times professionally for seven wins and in karate she is a six Dan Black Belt, while her parents Les and Beryl are 8th Dan Black Belts. She excelled as well at Muay Thai.

Born in Geelong, Victoria, Sharon learnt to stick up for herself early in life as her three brothers, who she loves dearly, would scrap amongst themselves as siblings do and Sharon would have to defend herself. That fierce determination to stand up for herself transferred to the fight ring as she recalled, “I trained that hard I would run against men. Spar against men. I would tell myself I was the fittest and fastest out there and I would go to war, a warriors mindset. I still got nerves and butterflies.”
 

No wonder she was the fittest, undergoing a physically demanding training schedule which included a 10-18km run in the morning, another training session at midday and a third session in the evening.

Wild Thing - The real deal

Explaining her business, Sharon said, “I facilitate change in others. I guide people to live in the question and open their world to new possibilities while energetically working with the body and utilising a simple and very effective process to delete and reset the mind, allowing clients to experience more space and ease in their thoughts.”

Her interest in the fighting arts came early through going down to gym as a pre schooler and joining in classes run by her dad as she mimicked what the older kids and adults were doing. Dad had a massively positive influence on her life not only as a coach but as a mentor and friend and the bond is obviously very close when you see them interacting and taking the Mickey out of each other.Sharon took up boxing relatively late in life at 30 and at the peak of her career at 37, she retired after she became pregnant with her twins.

Far from resting on her laurels, Sharon is fully involved as not only a martial arts and fights coach, but as a transformation coach where she helps people towards achieving their goals in life whether that be life, health, fitness or business goals.

Sharon has recently team up with well known Geoff Rowlands at the Southport Boxing Club, where she will be running various boxing and other fitness classes including a 12 Week Challenge coming up soon.

Explaining her business, Sharon said, “I facilitate change in others. I guide people to live in the question and open their world to new possibilities while energetically working with the body and utilising a simple and very effective process to delete and reset the mind, allowing clients to experience more space and ease in their thoughts.”

Sharon’s life experiences qualify her as the ideal person to do this work and she said it’s a huge blessing for her and very rewarding to be able to help people find themselves and start realising their potential. Once quite a judgemental person in her early years, that is certainly not the case now she said. “I came through a space where I judged a lot of things in my life, how I looked, how I felt. So much self judgement and judgement of other people because you are in the limelight.
 

“I now live a life where there is no judgement. People come to me and I don’t care what you look like, what your ability is. I’m here to get you to be the best you are. I go to work with you. So many people have got so many amazing ideas inside them whether it’s writing a book, starting a business, making relationships stronger.”

She encourages everyone to just be themselves. “Look at yourself and realise you are your own greatest friend. It took me so many years until I was 46-47 (I’m 51 now) before I could look in the mirror and say, ‘I love you Sharon’

“Fall back in love with yourself, be your own best friend. Just know that you are an incredible soul and we are all so gifted. Just be you, do what makes you feel great.”
 

On top of her busy life as a trainer and mentor, Sharon home schools her four sons and does it solo or as she calls it, an independent mum, with of course her parents support.

A close bond - "Family time is everything"

Interview & Words by John Alexander | Header Image taken by Tony Stretch. Supporting Images sourced by Absolutely Famous.

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