Queanbeyan boxer Monique Suraci is off to Paris, and she couldn't be more proud after a run of bad luck cost her Olympic qualification for Tokyo.
The 22-year-old won her Paris Olympic qualifying bout at the Pacific Games in the Solomon Islands on Sunday, earning her a spot on the Australian Olympic boxing team.
Suraci beat New Zealand's Tasmyn Benny by unanimous decision in Honiara to punch her ticket to the Games next year.
"It feels unreal. It feels like a dream come true really," Suraci said after the win.
"I'm very emotional right now, but I'm trying to hold it together. I'm very happy. All my hard work has paid off.
"I started when I was six. I had my first fight at 10. It's been a long, long journey."
Suraci was one of six Australian boxers that qualified after Sunday's action, including Tokyo bronze medallist Harry Garside, Tina Rahimi, Yusuf Chothia, Shannan Davey and Teremoana Teremoana.
The Australian boxing team is now 12-strong, meaning the Paris Games will see the most compete in the green and gold at an Olympics since London 2012 (11 boxers).
For Suraci, her qualification is reward after a rough series of setbacks denied her the chance of competing at the Olympics in Tokyo.
"I missed out on the last Olympics. Due to injury I couldn't qualify and then COVID happened for the second qualification," she said holding back tears.
"So making this one was really special to me.
"I can't believe I made it to be honest. It's unreal."
Suraci will fight in the women's 50-kilogram event, going into Paris with a record of 24-5-0.
The Australian Olympic Committee will nominate the qualified athletes for selection in early 2024 before the official final team is announced in readiness for the July Games.