Mary Kom Rues Lack of Quality Practice in Build-Up to Olympics
The second wave of the coronavirus pandemic has upset her groundwork for the Games.
Six-time world champion MC Mary Kom prepares for the Tokyo Olympics, she rues the lack of sparring partners and quality competitions due to the pandemic. The sporting icon has made the cut in the 51kg category.
"There are not many international competitions. Therefore, I decided to attend the Asian Boxing Championships in Dubai. I competed in the Boxam Tournament in Spain two months ago and since then I have been training at home in India," the 38-year-old Indian boxer told AIBA, the world governing body of the sport.
The second wave of coronavirus has upset her groundwork for the Olympics, she points out. "Many of my sparring partners have tested positive. If you win, you don't have to overestimate the success; just continue your hard work. I am not overconfident, and am looking forward to the final against the well-known Kazakh boxer [Nazym Kyzaibay at the Asian Championships]," said Mary Kom.
Mary Kom has won five editions of the Asian Boxing Championships and has her eyes set on the sixth title. The experienced campaigner did find the going tough in the semi-final against Mongolia's Lutsaikhan Altantsetseg, but held her own to emerge victorious in the bout on the virtue of a 4-1 split decision.
Last month, the Boxing Federation of India had to shut the national women's boxing camp in New Delhi following a sharp spike in COVID cases. Bases were shifted to the Army Sports Institute Pune, and training resumed on 6 May Mary Kom was the first to show up, but her personal coach Chhote Lal Yadav, couldn't join the camp after returning a positive test. He had to undergo a 15-day quarantine in New Delhi's Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
"The training was disrupted as the boxers had to spend a week in quarantine before stepping out for training as per Covid-19 protocols of the Army. So we just got one good week to train for Asian meet," said a national coach of the Indian team.
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