It will be tough to beat me even in 51kg: Mary Kom

Updated on Sep 26, 2019 10:46 PM IST
Mary Kom is the most decorated boxer in women’s world championships with six gold medals, the last one coming at home in 2018.
Mary Kom trains during a practice session.(Burhaan Kinu/HT PHOTO)
Mary Kom trains during a practice session.(Burhaan Kinu/HT PHOTO)
Hindustan Times, New Delhi | ByAvishek Roy

Six-time world champion MC Mary Kom means business. She has a new tattoo on both her arms— the five Olympic rings. Mary will be fighting in the 51kg of the upcoming world championships at Ulan-Ude, Russia from October 3. And though it is not her favourite category, she sounded a warning to her rivals, saying she will be tough to beat with all the experience she has.

She is the most decorated boxer in women’s world championships with six gold medals, the last one coming at home in 2018. All her gold medals have come in lower weight categories (45-48kg). “I have experience in 51kg also, not only in Olympics but in Asian Games and other international tournaments. It is not very tough. It all depends on how you handle the situation inside the ring,” Mary Kom said after training at the IG Stadium on Thursday.

“If I catch the strategy of my opponents, their timing, then it is easy. If I am not able to do it quickly then it becomes difficult. But they can’t win easily against me. I can say this confidently because I have a lot of experience. Even the opponents who are stronger and good will be in trouble against me,” said Mary.

Mary Kom’s Olympics bronze in London came in 51kg while her two Asian Games medals—2010 (bronze) and 2014 (gold)—also came in the flyweight division. She switched to 51kg at the India Open in May where she defeated Nikhat Zareen in the semi-final. Mary Kom then won gold in the President’s Cup.

“I am feeling good and strong. Recently I came back from Italy. We had good sparring sessions with boxers from five or six countries. I am happy with my training. My coach (Chhote Lal) is looking at my weaknesses and we are working on it. There is someone behind to tell me what are my strengths and weaknesses, sometimes you need that.”

The world championships will help her prepare for the Olympic qualifiers in February, said Mary Kom. “The best in the world be competing in 51kg. It will help me will see them and make my plan before the qualifiers. Gameplan and strategy are very important. You have to be strong and fit and the mind also need to be working.”

‘Not averse to trials if other girls prove themselves’

Mary Kom had asked for an exemption from national selection trials based on her performances and she was granted one. The last-minute pull out from the trials however raised a controversy. “The trials are not in my hands. I just informed (BFI) why should I give trials again and again because I have already performed. I am not a junior boxer. I am competing for almost 20 years.”

She said she is ready face trials provided other girls are able to prove themselves first at international meets. “I am not saying they are not good, or I will not give trials if they are good. If they are good enough if they win every competition, why should I not give trials. I am not like that,” Mary said. “I have given so many trials faced so many competitions and I am the only one proving. It should motivate others that until and unless you perform like her there is no point.”

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