Mary Kom Kicks-Off Campaign for Record 6th World Title on Sunday
At 35, Mary Kom will be fighting for a record sixth world title at the Women’s World Boxing Championships in Delhi.
What’s another name for a record-setter who refuses to back down, and keeps striving for the next top honour? Well, in the world of boxing, it’s MC Mary Kom.
Wth five world titles to her name, the indomitable boxer is set to fight for her sixth crown at the Women’s World Boxing Championships, in Delhi. India’s biggest medal hope, the 35-year-old Olympic bronze-medallist will be seeking her first AIBA title since 2010 when she kicks of her campaign on 18 November. Mary will take on the winner of the fight between USA’s Jazzelle Bobadilla and Aigerimin Kassenayeva of Kazakhstan in the 48kg category.
Besides the mountain of experience she brings into the ring, Mary found a direct spot in the World Championships roster on the back of her recent form.
Mary Kom’s Year So Far
In her first major tournament since taking a two-year sabbatical, Mary Kom won a historic gold at this year’s Commonwealth Games. Competing in her debut CWG, also perhaps her last, the 35-year-old became the first Indian woman to bag a yellow metal in the sport at the Games.
This was just five months after claiming a gold at the Asian Championships and following it up with another one at the India Open in January. Before heading to Gold Coast, she had won a silver medal at the Strandja Memorial Tournament in Bulgaria.
With an eye of the World Championships, Mary had opted out of the Asian Games. She was carrying a few niggles, and the Games didn’t have a 48kg category – so in order to focus on another world title, the Asian Games gold-medallist decided to give Indonesia a miss.
But in September, she delivered another world-class performance, bagging a gold at the Silesian Open Tournament in Poland. This, after losing 2kgs in just 4 hours!
Mary on Top
After nine editions of the Women’s World Boxing Championships, Mary Kom is the most successful boxer in the history of the tournament. In the inaugural season of the tournament, she bagged a silver and has since won five golds – 2002, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2010 – with the last one coming exactly eight years back.
While Ireland’s Katie Taylor too has won five world titles, her sixth medal at the World Championships is a bronze.
Hurdles Between Mary & 6th World Title
One of the strongest competitors in the 48kg category, there are a few hurdles (read: boxers) Mary might have to overcome on her quest to a clinch a sixth world title.
The 2012 World Championships gold medallist Josie Gabuco of Philippines is back in the mix after a two-year break, and has been performing well in the preparation events.
DPR Korea's ASBC Asian Confederation Women's Boxing Championships silver medallist Kim Hyang Mi is also a strong favourite and could be strong competitor to Mary.
Only 21, but Russia's Ekaterina Paltseva is the new EUBC European Women's Champion in the lowest category. Two more European stars are Romania's World Championships silver medallist Steluta Duta and Bulgaria's EUBC European Women's Champion Sevda Asenova – who both have got more than 10 years of international experience.
Another opponent to keep a lookout for in Mary’s category is Sevda Asenova who had defeated the Indian boxer 1-4 in the final of the Strandja Women's Memorial Tournament earlier this year.
With retirement being far-fetched, Mary seems as fit and ready to go and win India that much-awaited gold!
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