Mary Kom is the greatest champion in the world, says Rio gold medalist Estelle Mossely
The renowned MC Mary Kom was in her prime in the ring when French boxer Estelle Mossely, who won gold at the 2016 Rio Olympics, competed in her first World Championships 15 years ago. Although Kom wasn't a six-time world champion at the time, she was well on her course to achieving greatness.
"It was my first world championship in 2008. I saw this big champion for the very first time. I saw her fight and I was really excited to see a woman fighting like that and getting a big victory."
"For me, she is the biggest champion in the world since the inception of women's boxing," Mossely, who is in town for the Women's Boxing World Championship, told PTI. Despite the fact that Mossely was unable to talk with Mary Kom back then, she is eager to do so on her first trip to India. She also wishes to see the Taj Mahal.
"I saw her a few years after but haven't got a chance to speak to her. I hope she's around and I get a chance to speak to her this time."
Mossely, who was born to a Congolese father and a Ukrainian mother, has a very outstanding résumé of her own. Before going pro, she won the lightweight world championship and the Olympic gold medal. She has a world title and an undefeated 11-0 record on the professional circuit.
She hopes to win another Olympic gold medal at her hometown of Paris in 2024, therefore the Women's World Championship will mark her return to amateur boxing.
"I have trained for this since September last year, because professional is different form amateur boxing. I worked a lot to hit quick punches, and give lot of punches. I worked a lot and I'm ready. The Olympic Games is my target."
Mossely is an IT engineer by trade and is also a mother of two. She chose to retire from boxing in 2016 following a successful year that saw her capture the lightweight Olympic and World Championship championships.
"It was not part of the plan to (turn pro). I had said if I win the Olympics, I will stop boxing and go back to work, but once that happened I had a lot of opportunities open up." The 30-year-old believes that the IBA's measures have increased competition in amateur boxing over the past few years.
"Now we have more women in the World Championships, the quality of boxers has increased because IBA is helping poor country, giving more prize money and giving boxers the opportunity to fight."