Sandeep Singh’s journey from Bhiwani to Armenia has been one of toil. The son of a mason lost the AIBA Junior World Championship 46kg title-bout to Armenian boxer Karyun Oghomonyan to settle for silver on Saturday but showed the world that fortune favours the brave.
“I owe this success to my family,” said Sandeep from Yerevan, Armenia after losing to the host country boxer 4-10. “We have limited resources but my father never let it come in the way of my practice. Whenever I required money for boxing I always got it, even if he had to borrow it. But whenever I got a cash award, I handed it over to my father,” said Sandeep.
“I want to make a name in the sport like Akhil and hope that some day my boxing will help my family overcome the financial crunch,” added the Vishnu Academy boxer.
Sandeep’s coach Vishnu Bhagwan was all praise for his pupil on Saturday. “He is really tough. I never saw him skip practice… hope his triumph motivates other upcoming boxers.”
Meanwhile, the eight-member Indian contingent ended its campaign with one silver and three bronze. Though the team couldn’t surpass the previous edition’s performance of two gold and one silver, nonetheless it was a decent outing.
“Overall our performance was quite impressive. Six boxers made it to the quarterfinals and four reached the medal round. The championship would help them graduate to the senior level and it wouldn’t be surprising if a couple of them make it to the 2012 London Olympics,” said junior national coach MS Dhaka.
On Sandeep’s final bout, he said, “Throughout the tournament Sandeep was dominating. He gave his best in the final too… this is what I want from my boxers.”