Sumya Anani is itching for a fight.

Kansas City Strip 

Sumya Anani is itching for a fight.

She's thrown down the glove: Kansas City boxing goddess Sumya Anani is in a weird state of suspended animation. She was supposed to fight Britt VanBuskirk -- the only woman who has ever beaten her -- at Park Place Hotel this weekend, but the match has been postponed indefinitely, with no other matchups in sight. Yet her promoters at Tony Holden Productions insist big things are looming on the fighter's horizon. They're hoping to score Anani an HBO-broadcast rematch with Christy Martin -- the long-reigning ruler of women's boxing whom, incidentally, Anani beat up two years ago.

To generate interest for the spectacular showdown, Anani made a rare appearance in the national boxing press this week, granting an interview with Tom Gerbasi, a columnist at houseofboxing.com. Though she welcomes any opportunity to bludgeon "The Coal Miner's Daughter," she doubts it's ever going to happen. "Christy doesn't want to take another beating," Anani says.

But Anani might have an inside track to a rematch. It turns out that Anani's friend, Johnson County society woman and Kansas City Home Design writer Sally Uhlmann, is also friends with Martin. Uhlmann met the famed pugilist via their mutual interest in the case of Chantal McCorkle, who is serving time in Florida for her part in an infomercial scam. Uhlmann is obsessed with getting McCorkle out of jail. "Our mission statement is to focus on the five P's: to position (McCorkle) with the public and the press to gain a presidential pardon," Uhlmann has told the Pitch ("Chantal's Angels," November 9). Martin dedicated her 1998 fight against Anani to McCorkle.

Uhlmann knows Anani through Bikram yoga. "We spend a lot of time sweating," Uhlmann explains. "We're into that really hot yoga."

On a recent trip to Florida, Uhlmann gave Martin a copy of a Pitch article about Anani ("To Her, With Glove," September 28). But her goal wasn't to get Martin in the ring with Anani. She wants them to be friends. "It's pretty amazing because, you know, when you have this idea of a boxer, you know, a female boxer, you picture this hard-nose, tough woman. But they're not. They're both very nice and sweet. They would probably really like each other."

Anani is skeptical. Of Martin she says, "Sally doesn't know her like I know her."

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