As Indian sports fans gear up to watch the Olympics this month, one can only begin to wonder whether the expectations of a large medal haul will be met. As for the boxing contingent, there are several talented boxers heading to Tokyo who are expected to deliver a large medal haul.
Back home in India, Toofan has taken the world of Bollywood by storm with its story line and portrayal of a boxer who defies all odds. It has earned rave reviews due to its acting and entire story line. This movie can also be seen as a representation of what several of the Indian boxers have gone through during the course of their careers. We take a look at what to expect of the Indian boxing contingent at the Tokyo Olympics this year.
Lovlina Borgohain is the youngest member of one of India's largest boxing contingents to have ever gone for an Olympics. Her experience might go against her given that she is only 23 years of age with minimal participation in international events but nonetheless, she can be a surprise package with her immense technique.
Simranjit kaur has had an extremely tough journey to the Olympics in which her battles outside the ring were ordeals in themselves. But given that she has achieved a podium finish at the World Championships, the 26 year old will be looking to progress through to the final rounds.
Pooja Rani and MC Mary Kom are the other two boxers who make up the women's contingent. Mary Kom will be looking to capture the elusive gold medal and add to her tally of an Olympic bronze medal. Bhiwani born Pooja Rani has won several medals at the Asian Games and has battled through injuries to get to where she is today. She is highly rated to progress through to the final few rounds as well.
Amit Panghal is one of the few Indian boxers who constantly been proclaimed as a sure shot medal winner. There can be no doubt about that given that he is World No. 1 in the flyweight category and has been consistently winning medals at the Asian Games, Asian Championships as well as a silver at the World Championships. He is followed by another debutant, Manish Kaushik. This man has been a big underdog when it comes to international events and has come away with medals at the Commonwealth Games and World Championships despite not being highly rated to win. He is expected to progress through fairly easily given his experience and knack for swinging a win out of nowhere.
Just like Mary Kom, Vikas Krishnan too is a seasoned veteran at the Olympics. This will be his third time and given that he has waited so long to finish on the podium, he will be aiming to use his experience in the US Boxing circuit to good use. One can expect him to enter the semi-final with relative ease.
India will also be sending two boxers to the 75kg and 91kg categories. Ashish Kumar will be taking part in the middleweight category. He is relatively experienced with medals at the Asian Championship and a qualification spot at the Asia-Oceania Championships allowing him to test his skills against some of the best boxers.
32-year old Satish Kumar will be India's first ever entrant in the super heavyweight category. He missed out on taking part at the Rio Olympics due to injuries but since 2016, has fought his way back time and again to reclaim what he has striven for all his life. He will be aiming to capitalise on an opportunity of his lifetime in what will probably be his first and final Olympics. Watch out for this man because he too will enter with all gloves blazing.