I am as fit as I was four years ago: Mary Kom

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Image Courtesy: © Facebook - Mary Kom

I am as fit as I was four years ago: Mary Kom

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Arun S Kaimal

04/23/2016

Five-time world amateur boxing champion Mary Kom believes that next month’s women’s world boxing championship will be the biggest challenge of her career. Speaking to the media at a promotional event, the 33-year old opened up about her fitness, Olympic dreams and much more.

The 2016 women’s world boxing championships, which will be held at Astana, Kazakhstan, from May 19, will be the last chance for 2012 Olympics bronze medallist Mary Kom to confirm her place in the Rio Olympics, and the Manipuri pugilist believes that her never-say-die attitude will help her in the challenge.

“Every time people write me off, I come back with a vengeance and invariably win a gold at a major international meet.

“I am not aware of what the possible field will be. Anyhow, once you are there, you have to be at your best and that’s what I always try to do in any event. The onus is on me to prove once again that I am the best in India in my category,” said a smiling Mary Kom in an exclusive interview with Sportstar on the sidelines of a promotional event here on Friday.

Mary Kom had missed out on qualification in the Asia-Oceania Olympic Boxing qualifier last month after crashing out of the tournament in the semi-final. The 51-kg boxer will have to reach the semi-final of the world boxing championship next month and she said that her age and fitness will not be a problem come the competition.

“Let me make a couple of things clear. First, my dream was to win an Olympic medal and I realised that in the London Games. Since I am chasing the bigger one of winning gold, I am not so naïve to think that it will come on a platter. Hours of real tough training have begun and I am determined first to qualify for the Rio Games and then aim for the gold.

“Yes, having missed out the qualifying mark (by not reaching the final of the Asia-Oceania championship), I am aware of the huge expectations and also the kind of pressure that will be there. But I know how to handle it.

“Age is definitely not a factor as I believe my fitness is as good as it was four years ago at the London Olympics. For all the training and planning have not started just now. It has been on for the last four years thanks to a very supportive husband who is taking care of our three kids,” said a beaming Mary Kom.

When asked about her nomination to the Rajya Sabha, the 33-year old pugilist described it as the greatest honour.

“It’s a great honour for me. I have never ever dreamt of this (Rajya Sabha seat). I was only focussed on my training and qualification for this year’s Rio Olympics... I have always yearned to win an Olympic gold,” Mary was quoted as saying by Deccan Chronicle.  

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