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Unstoppable Mary Kom

THE ASIAN AGE. | DEEPIKA DAS
Published : Nov 23, 2018, 1:15 am IST
Updated : Nov 23, 2018, 3:07 am IST

In the final, Mary Kom will face Ukrain’s Hanna Okhota, whom the Indian had beaten in a tournament in Poland earlier this year.

M.C. Mary Kom (left) in action against Kim Hyang Mi of North Korea in their 45-48 kg category semifinal bout at the Aiba Women’s World Boxing Championships in New Delhi on Thursday. (Photo: Biplab Banerjee)
 M.C. Mary Kom (left) in action against Kim Hyang Mi of North Korea in their 45-48 kg category semifinal bout at the Aiba Women’s World Boxing Championships in New Delhi on Thursday. (Photo: Biplab Banerjee)

New Delhi: Five-time world champion M.C. Mary Kom danced her way back from the ring like a child after she blowed away North Korea’s Kim Hyang Mi 5:0 to enter the light flyweight final of the Aiba Women’s World Boxing Championships here on Thursday. The combination of vast experience and nimbleness kept the 35-year-old and mother-of-three in the running to become the first to clinch six world titles. Such was the dominance of Mary Kom here that she won all her bouts with unanimous decisions en route her sixth Worlds final.

Later, debutant Lovlina Borgohain lost her 69kg semifinal bout to much-experienced Chen Nien-Chin of Chinese Taipei in a split verdict (4:0) to settle for a bronze. Though the Indian managed to win a point, it was docked because of a warning from the referee.

Mary Kom had a sedate start as the KD Jadhav Hall was filled with the chants of ‘Mary..Mary..’ She waited for the right opening and landed a solid hook straight on Kim’s face and then punched her right and left. The North Korean retaliated but Mary used her diminutive height and excellent footwork to douse the attack.

The second round started on equal note as they traded blows but Mary successfully landed on point areas with her fiery left hook. She then mixed with jabs from both hands that left Kim gasping.

Mary became more cautious in the last round and showed aggressive approach as the bout wore on. Kim Started from left and Mary was matching her move. The North Korean gave away all she had but was not enough in front of much experienced Mary.

“I had beaten the North Korean opponent in the Asian Championships last year and that time it was a one-sided bout. But win or lose, every boxer always learn and I think she has learnt (from that bout). At the same time I also have learnt and came prepared to defend and counter. I am happy that I am in the final,” she said after the bout.

“My opponent was taller than me and strong also. Taller boxers can have the advantage, they can get inside immediately and come back again. But once inside the ring, I don’t care whether my opponent is tall or not, I play my game and when I know hers, I do my own,” she added.

In the final, Mary Kom will face Ukrain’s Hanna Okhota, whom the Indian had beaten in a tournament in Poland earlier this year.

“I have beaten her before. I will go through that bout and plan the strategy. I hope to beat her again.”

The other matches went on the expected lines as all the top seeds — China’s Hong Gu (69kg), Bulgaria’s Stoyka Petrova (54kg), Taipei girl Yu-Ting Lin (54kg) — entered finals. On Friday, the other two Indians — Sonia Chahal (57kg) and Simranjit Kaur (64kg) — will be in action.

Tags: mc mary kom, womens world boxing championships