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Boxing: Akhil Kumar backs India to win two medals in Tokyo 2020

Boxing: Akhil Kumar backs India to win two medals in Tokyo 2020

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Published: 29 March 2019 8:05 AM GMT
Former Commonwealth Games winner Akhil Kumar predicts that the Indian boxing contingent will bring back at least two medals from the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. He feels that the current batch of pugilists are the best collection India has at the current moment. Akhil remarked that this is the best phase of Indian boxing, both for men and women. During a promotional event in Chandigarh, Akhil said to TOI, "At present, I can stick out my neck and say that this is the best phase of Indian boxing - for both men and women. We have a lot of talented boxers and I'm confident that we are definitely going to win at least two medals during the Tokyo Olympics."
At the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games, the Indian boxers comprising of 7 men and 3 women returned home with two medals, which according to Akhil was not ‘modest’, although he feels that the tally could have increased. Amit Panghal won a gold medal in the men’s lightweight category while Vikash Krishan Yadav secured a bronze medal in the men’s middleweight category. Amit Panghal created history at the Asian Games 2018. As per the latest amendments made by the International Boxing Association (AIBA), the number of categories for the men’s section at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics has been reduced to 8 from 10
. On the other hand, in the women’s section, the number of categories has been increased from three to five. The former Olympian said that due to the changes made by the AIBA, the boxers will have to adapt accordingly as "changes in weight categories isn't a new phenomenon". "It's not a new thing for world boxing. There have been changes in weight categories in the past too. For example, in the Sydney Olympics there were 12 weight categories then there were 11 in 2004 and the 2008 Olympics. In the 2012 London Olympics, the weight categories were reduced to 10. When I competed in Beijing, I competed in the bantam-weight category before it was made 56kg,” said Akhil. He added,” In the World Championships in Milan, I competed in the 57kg category and then it was changed to 60kg. So it is nothing new. The issue, however, will be how a coach trains his ward for a particular weight category since the training earlier was totally focusing on another weight category.”
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