Facing off opponents three years older than him, Yashwardhan Singh, an 11 year old from Gurgaon, bagged the silver medal in the 62nd National School Boxing Championship held in New Delhi by the School Games Federation of India.
The class 7 student of Shalom Hills International School won four fights in the under-14 age group (40kg to 42kg category) held at the Chhatrasal Stadium from January 2-9.
He was able to defeat last year’s champion Monu Singh from Maharashtra in the quarter finals. The penultimate fight against Delhi’s Harsh (who goes by one name) was a closely fought one with a scoreline of 2-1 in Harsh’s favour.
However, the loss has not hit Yashwardhan’s hopes of representing India in the 2024 Olympics. He is now focussing on a training camp for the World School Games.
“The top two-finish secured my position for the World School Games training camp in May. Till then, I am focusing on correcting my technical errors and strengthening my upper body. I have been watching online professional boxing videos extensively and emulating them during practice,” he said.
Yashwardhan was introduced to boxing in 2013 and began training at the Tau Devi Lal Stadium in Gurgaon under his coach Dharamvir Singh. He trained for four hours daily along with taking a high protein diet and exercising in his home-gym and with boxing equipment. He won a bronze in 2015 in the Haryana State Boxing Championships and a gold in 2016. The latter qualified him for the National School Boxing Championship.
His father, Satyajit Singh, works as a trader in Sector 56 and dedicates the family’s savings to his son’s boxing dreams.
“My son looks up to Vijender Singh as a role model and I want to ensure that he is able to emulate similar success. Professional boxing clubs from Russia want to sign him up for training camps. With some funding and savings, we are expecting him to be there soon,” Satyajit said.