London Olympics Women's boxing bronze medallist MC Mary Kom was not allowed opportunity to exhibit her natural game as her rival Nicola Adams forced her to go defensive on Wednesday, felt international pugilists and her team-mates in the Indian police.
Adams dashed Mary Kom's hopes of making it to the finals as she outclassed her 11-6 in the women's semifinal in London on Wednesday, leaving her to settle for a bronze.
"I have been watching the match and I can certainly say it was not her natural game as the sharpness in her punches and her excellent foot work was missing from the beginning," said 2011 China Asian Championship bronze medallist Laxmi Padia.
Expressing disappointment over today's outcome, Padia said it seemed Mary Kom was looking for opportunities to score rather than going offensive, which was her natural approach in the ring.
"She used to cook for herself as well as for me and one partner from Mizoram in Patiala camp in February-March," Padia said.
Hailing her Olympic medal performance, Padia said it is Mary Kom, who has made the world recognise Indian women's mettle in boxing.
Former world champion woman boxer Aruna Mishra blamed Mary's defensive approach for the loss against Adams.
"We saw Mary Kom going out offensive right from the word go but the approach was lacking here. In fact, the aggressive approach of her Great Britain rival forced the lone Indian boxer qualified for the London Games to take a back foot from the beginning and hardly allowed her any opportunity to take upper hand in the first two rounds," Mishra, who had won gold in the World Championship in Norway in 2004, told PTI.
Referring the semi-final defeat margin, Mishra, who was Mary Kom's team mate in the Indian Police team for over seven years, said it appeared confused and poor foot work against her rival in the beginning but made all out effort to bounce back in the remaining two rounds.
The defeat margin would have been slender had Mary Kom played her natural game.
Expressing confidence that Indian women would win more medals in the next edition, Mishra said Mary Kom's excellent performance in the Olympics was morale boosting and would pave way for other Indian women boxers to excel in the next edition.