No fencing Monique Scibberas in

Monique Sciberras will compete in the national titles in the fencing discipline of sabre in Brisbane later this month.

Monique Sciberras will compete in the national titles in the fencing discipline of sabre in Brisbane later this month.

Monique Scibberas also competes in the combat sport Muay Thai.

Monique Scibberas also competes in the combat sport Muay Thai.

She's only been fencing for little over a year but such is the talent of pocket powerhouse Monique Sciberras that later this month she will compete in the national titles in Brisbane.

The Bullaburra-based 13-year-old is surprisingly experienced for someone her age. She started her career with karate but retired from that at nine, having accumulated two world and six national titles in her age groups.

She has also dabbled in judo, boxing and Muay Thai, a combat sport which uses fists, elbows, knees, shins and feet. She won a silver medal in Muay Thai in the 12- to 15-year division at the world titles in Bangkok last year.

Fencing was something her mother, Alison, thought might help Monique's boxing, as both sports target parts of the body to score points.

Monique's weapon of choice is the sabre and it is in this discipline that she will represent NSW at the school individual national championships in 10 days.

President of the Mountains Fencing Club, Ross Gibbs, said of his young charge: "Monique is one of our outstanding junior fencers. She only recently moved to the challenging discipline of sabre. With her enormous tenacity and desire to achieve, Monique will be an excellent Blue Mountains representative at the national competition later this month."

Monique's father, David, is a former boxing and Muay Thai coach, who has continued the family tradition with his daughter.

Monique trains every day, doing cardio work skipping or running around the hills near her home. She also uses an old truck tyre in the backyard to hone her footwork skills for Muay Thai, a regime that literally keeps her on her toes.

"It helps my balance and moves," she said.

She can't yet decide which sport she will ultimately pursue.

"I like the fencing and I'm hoping to get into the national team for that. And with the boxing, I'm hope to get into the Oympics one day," she said.

She has trained with former world champion boxer Jeff Fenech. "I learnt new things from him, I learnt to use a lot more power."

Monique qualified for the fencing nationals after competing in a state competition at Marrickville. She also came second in the Open Women's Sabre in the Southern Highlands Challenge in March, competing against adults.

Fencing bouts generally last about three minutes each and the first to five points is the winner. The young competitor said she was "very excited" at the prospect of her first national event.

She will also compete in the Australian titles for Muay Thai later this year, and will somehow find the time to go for her black belt in the art of Japanese weaponry called Matayoshi Kobudo, which she began at the age of six.

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