The Five-time World Champion and the chief warrior of women’s boxing in India, M.C. Mary Kom, has raised hopes for a medal after she qualified for the 2012 Olympics. She is the only Indian woman boxer to qualify for the London Olympics.
M.C. Mary Kom, the 29-year-old boxer from Manipur, qualified for the London Olympics by finishing as one of the top two Asian boxers at the Women’s World Boxing Championship held recently in Qinhuangdao, China. It is a different matter she returned without a medal from the Women’s World Boxing Championships for the first time since its inception in 2001.
M.C. Mary Kom was born on 1 March 1983 in a poor family. At that time no one had ever thought that she would one day become a world champion in boxing. Her family background reveals a lot about how Mary overcame adversities and made a name for herself in the arena of boxing. During her childhood, Mary used to help her parents in the fields, cutting wood, making charcoal and fishing. And being the eldest child in the family, she also spent considerable time looking after her two younger sisters and a brother.
Mary had the honour of bearing the Queen’s Baton in the opening ceremony of the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi. SportsPro, a leading sports magazine, has rated Mary Kom as the 38th most remarkable athlete in the world. The lane to the Manipur Sports Village has been named after Mary Kom to honour the boxer.
Mary, the mother of two, generally fights at the light flyweight (48 kg) level but switched to flyweight (51 kg), so that she could participate in the London Olympics and was therefore punching above her weight. Mary has won all her titles in the 48 kg category, and adjusting to the 51 kg category may be difficult. But the spirit with which she fights gives us reason to hope that she might win a medal in the Olympics.