It’s a tournament she’s dominated for years, but the Asian Boxing Championship this time around is more than just an opportunity to win medals for MC Mary Kom, who is “desperate to compete” before the Olympics after training in India -19 pandemic.
Mary Com (51 kg) has collected one silver and a stunning five gold medals from her seven appearances at the continental show.
The six-time world champion can’t wait to land in Dubai for the upcoming edition, which starts on May 24, because all she wants right now is a “good train”.
“I’m so eager to compete, there was hardly any training because of the pandemic and I desperately need it to be evaluated before the Olympics,” Manipuri, 38, told PTI in Pune, where she has been training for the past few days.
She was due to move to Pune, along with several other women tied to the Olympics, after the Delhi National Camp was forced to close due to a COVID-19 outbreak in a balloon set up at Indira Gandhi’s indoor stadium last month.
“It was not easy. I was at home after returning from the tournament in Spain (in March). My children were not feeling well, we had to deal with this and this comes with its own worries. Then the camp in Delhi was canceled because of COVID, “she said.
“One thing or another continued to affect the training schedule. So the Asian Championship is important because I compete and there is nothing better than a good race to help prepare,” she added.
A few days of training she received at the highly regarded Army Sports Institute in Pune were beneficial, according to the legendary Pagilist, who also made his first shot of the COVID-19 vaccine there.
“I feel confident in my body. But as I always say, I will do my best, whether it will be enough to get a medal is something that only time will tell,” said Mary Com, repeating her long-standing pre-tournament position on expectations for medals.
“I also have the first dose of vaccine, so it’s also a little reassuring,” she added.
The reassurance that she will be vaccinated is important for Mary Com, as amid the pandemic, she is voting on her fears of traveling abroad for training.
In fact, the Asian Championship was originally scheduled to take place in India, but was moved to Dubai after COVID-19 cases jumped into the country and restrictions on international travel came into force.
“Look at how fast the world has changed and we are planning and planning and planning. Kuch pata nahi chalta (you never know). It’s so important to stay in the present,” said Mary Com, offering a philosophical approach to the uncertainty that has crept in. in everyday life in the midst of a pandemic.
She will not have her personal trainer Chhote Lal Yadav to take her to Dubai, as he has recently recovered from COVID-19 and his name cannot be included in the delegation for the event.
Yadav is confident that Mary Com will adapt well to the situation.
“She is experienced, it is good for her to deal with difficult situations. She will be fine,” he said.
All four boxers heading to the Tokyo Olympics – Mary Kom, Simrandjit Kaur (60kg), Lovlina Borgohain (69kg) and Puja Rani (75kg) – will be in action at the event along with six others.
Of the men in the Olympic group, defending champion Amit Pangal (52kg), Vikas Krishan (69kg) and Ashish Chaudhari (75kg) will compete alongside seven others, even while Manish Kaushik (63kg) and Satish Kumar (+) 91 kg) continue their recovery from COVID-19.