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Confusion over Mary Kom's defeat, how did she lose despite winning 2 rounds: Explained
Mary Kom said she thought she had won the bout but later came to know that she lost only while checking her social media handles.
As the match ended, the commentator announced, "The winner on points by split decision," a brief momentarily pause, followed by "in red," another short pause, but by this time Mary Kom, in the blue corner, had put up her fist in celebration and did not follow the rest of the commentary that mentioned "Ingrit Valencia".
Mary Kom, despite losing her bout, went on celebrating and sent out gestures of gratitude to the crowd, followed by hugging her opponent in joy. The audience who followed the match assumed her gesture to be a valuable lesson on the sporting and Olympic spirit. A majority concluded that Mary Kom was bidding farewell to the Olympic boxing ring one last time on a happy note as it was her swansong. The same audience was up for a surprise when they came to know that Mary Kom's reason for celebrating was that she thought she had won the bout.
The 38-year-old boxing legend told PTI, "I was happy inside the ring, when I came out, I was happy because in my mind I knew I had won. When they took me for doping, I was still happy. Only when I saw the social media and my coach (Chhote Lal Yadav repeated it to me), it sunk in that I have lost."
As it happened, despite winning two rounds, Mary ended up losing the bout. But how did it happen?
The Indian trailed 4-1 in the opening round with four of the five judges scoring it 10-9 in favour of Valencia.
In the next two rounds, Mary Kom got three of the five judges to rule in her favour, but the overall scoreline was still in favour of Valencia.
The Manipuri clinched the third round too but once again, it was 3-2 and not 4-1 which is what she needed to swing the final score in her favour.
Mary Kom had tears in her eyes and a wide smile on her face when the referee raised Valencia's hand at the end of the bout, exhausted after the intense clash.
"I had beaten this girl twice in the past. I couldn't believe that her hand was raised by the referee. I swear, it hadn't struck me that I lost, I was so sure," she told PTI.
Mary Kom has now slammed Boxing Task Force for "poor judging" in her flyweight.
She has also said that she won't quit and will return to action again and fight whichever tournaments she gets a chance at.