World Boxing Championships: MC Mary Kom's eighth medal is great!
India's six-time world champion boxer reaches semi-final to assure herself of a record eighth medal at the championships; Rani, Boro, Borgohain in semis too
Ulan-Ude (Russia): Six-time champion MC Mary Kom (51kg) yesterday surpassed herself as the most successful boxer in the Women's World Championship history by securing an unprecedented eighth medal before three of her compatriots also entered the semi-finals here. The debutant duo of sixth seed Manju Rani (48kg) and Jamuna Boro (54kg) along with last edition's bronze-medallist and third seed Lovlina Borgohain (69kg) made the medal rounds alongside Mary Kom to ensure that India equalled their last edition's performance in terms of number of medals won.
Mary Kom defeated Colombia's Valencia Victoria, fetching a unanimous 5-0 verdict to make the last-four stage. Rani stunned top seed and last edition's bronze-medallist Kim Hyang Mi of South Korea 4-1, while Boro, an Assam Rifles employee, got the better of Germany's Ursula Gottlob by a similar margin after draining showdowns.
Borgohain, on the other hand, pulled off a facile 4-1 triumph over Poland's sixth-seeded Karolina Koszewska. "I'm happy to have secured a medal, but I would be looking to make it better by reaching the finals," Mary Kom, 36, said after the bout. "It was a good bout for me and I will now try to improve on this performance in the semi-finals," she added. Awaiting Mary Kom in the semi-finals tomorrow, after a rest day today, is second-seeded Turk Busenaz Cakiroglu, who is the reigning European Championships and European Games gold-medallist.
India's Manju Rani (right) punches Korea's Kim Hyang Mi yesterday
Meanwhile, both Rani and Boro fetched hard-fought victories, engaged with strong opponents who hardly gave anything away defensively. But the two Indians were good in counter-attacks. "My opponent was aggressive and in the first round, I was confused about how to handle her but eventually I settled down and it became easier," Boro said after her bout.
Later Borgohain had little trouble going past Koszewska, whose rather awkward stance compounded her problems. However, Kavita Chahal (+81kg) didn't seem up to it and produced a rather sloppy show against Belarus's Katsiaryna Kavaleva, who got the win merely by hitting straight and clean for most part of the bout.
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Interesting facts about Mary Kom, six-time world champ and mother of three