- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 15, 2018

She’s no Mack Beggs.

Not only is Brazilian MMA fighter Anne Veriato transitioning in the opposite manner (from male to female) but she competes in the opposite manner (against men).

And unlike the Texas high-school wrestler, Veriato said it’d be unfair for her to fight against women, as Beggs is doing.

At Mr. Cage 34 last weekend in Manaus, Veriato had her first MMA fight and defeated Railson Paixao by a unanimous decision, despite losing a point for an illegal knee.

Veriato already had success doing jiu-jitsu shows against men before transitioning to MMA. And she said she should only fight men.

“It’s only fair to fight men,” Veriato told MMA Fighting. “It never crossed my mind to fight a woman because I think I’m too good. If I beat men my entire career, I can still beat them despite the hormone process.”

Veriato, 21, was born a male, and while female hormone therapy does reduce strength, it doesn’t erase all the characteristics of a man’s body or the history of having had that body.

Beggs is going in the other direction, born a girl but transitioning to a male. The two-time state wrestling champion won his titles in the girl’s division, as Texas rules require. But the hormone therapy that’s part of gender transitioning means he’s essentially granted the right to the legal of use banned steroids, which has prompted complaints of unfair advantage.

Transgender fighter Fallon Fox had a short career on U.S. MMA circuits, but she competed against women, prompting similar complaints of unfair advantage.

But fighting men, Veriato said, “makes me happy and hungrier to train. I don’t think it’s fair to fight women.”

• Victor Morton can be reached at vmorton@washingtontimes.com.

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