The Indian Boxing contingent at Tokyo Olympics is full of promise, as the pugilists are expected to return home with a few medals. India's rise in boxing started at the 2008 Olympic Games, where Vijender Singh bagged a Bronze Medal. His feat was followed by Mary Kom, the first female boxer to win a Bronze medal at London Olympics 2012.
Though the Indian boxing contingent returned empty-handed from the Rio Olympic Games, it is expected to pull off a strong performance this time around. With nine boxers taking part in the Olympics, India will have a historic milestone at the Games. Satish Kumar Yadav will become the first Indian pugilist to qualify for the Super Heavyweight Category (+91 kg). In the past during the 1984 Olympics, Kaliq Singh and in 1996 olympics Lakha Singh played in the heavyweight (91kg) category, respectively but the the india never had representation in Super Heavyweight Category (+91 kg).
Satish Kumar will be the first Indian boxer to take part in +91KG category (super heavyweight) in boxing
Satish Kumar qualified for the Tokyo Olympics after defeating the Mongolian boxer, Otgonbayer Daivii in the Asian Boxing Olympic qualifiers last year. Satish joined the Indian Army as a teenager, and started professional boxing at the age of 19. He competed in his first national level event at the age of 21.
He bagged a silver medal at the Senior National Boxing Championship in 2011, and also claimed the Bronze Medal at the Asian Games in 2014. However, his career took a downward spiral since then, as he suffered a grave injury which ruled him out of the Rio Olympics in 2016.
He made his return to boxing in 2018, when he won a Gold Medal at an International Grand Prix in Czech Republic. He followed it up with a Silver Medal at the Indian Open International Boxing held in New Delhi.
Among his top achievements, he secured a bronze medal at the Asian Championships in 2019, and also bagged the silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in 2018. He enters the Tokyo Olympics without having played a single professional match since March 2020. The 32-year-old had to miss the Asian Boxing Championships in March this year, as he had tested positive for covid-19.
Satish Kumar has an outside chance of winning a medal at the Tokyo Olympics. Regardless of his result in Tokyo, he has already created history by becoming the first pugilist in the +91 kg category.