Day 6, afternoon session: Mary KOM stopped at round of 16, hopes to inspire youngsters with her experience

29/07/2021
TOKYO, JAPAN – JULY 29: Chungneijang Mery Kom Hmangte of Team India reacts during the Women’s Fly (48-51kg) on day six of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Kokugikan Arena on July 29, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Luis Robayo – Pool/Getty Images)

India’s national hero Mary KOM did not make it through today’s Women’s Fly (48-51kg) round of 16. Venezuela’s Irismar del Valle CARDOZO ROJAS, seed #3 in this tournament, stopped her via a 3:2 split decision after a tight match.

KOM, a 2012 London Olympics’ bronze medalist, a mother of four and a politician who serves as a member of the Rajya Sabha (the upper house of the parliament of India), earned the nickname “Magnificent Mary” through her numerous victories on the ring. The first Indian female boxer to win an Olympic medal, she is regarded as one of the sport’s greatest, with six World titles, one Asian title, and a total tally of nine World Championship medals on her count.

“Split decision is just a name,” KOM said right after the bout, commenting on her loss. “I have the advantage of experience, but she is young, she is the future. Maybe she can improve a lot. For me, I have been fighting 20 years. It’s easy to count to 20, but when you’ve had that long career, competition, tournament, one or two days with the family, training…It’s not easy.”

Asked on whether she will continue after this tournament, she answered:

“Paris? I don’t know, there is an age limit (40 years old). Maybe it will change, I don’t know. But I’m still strong enough. It’s what’s in your heart and your mind. It’s about if you have the willpower, a strong mentality. Being focused, disciplined. For 20 years all my focus has been on fighting, and I know all my country is with me.”

“I hope there are so many young boxers coming up due to me, but we want more to become champions. Maybe now it is a chance for the youngsters.”

Today’s Women’s Fly (48-51kg) round of 16 also saw the victories of Japan’s NAMIKI Tsukimi (5:0 against Brazil’s Graziele SOUSA), Bulgaria’s Stoyka Zhelyazkova KRASTEVA (5:0 against USA’s Virginia FUCHS) and China’s CHANG Yuan (5:0 against Charley-Sian DAIVSON of Great Britain). They all advanced to the quarterfinals, to be held on 1 August.

The Men’s Super-Heavy (+91kg) round of 16 continued this afternoon. USA’s Richard TORREZ JR beat 5:0 Chouaib BOULOUDINATS of Algeria, and in the quarterfinal (scheduled on 1 August) he will meet Dainier PERO of Cuba, who had the best of Colombia’s Camilo Cristian SALCEDO CODAZI by a landslide 5:0 decision, today.

TORREZ said: “I felt good. I didn’t do everything I wanted to do, but I completed most of the tasks I had. I’d give myself a C+ or a C for that.”

“I’ve had to wait almost a week to get my first fight, while everyone on the men’s side of the tournament won their first fight. I was sitting there, calling my dad, saying, ‘what am I going to do?’, and my dad was saying, ‘don’t worry, you’re going to win too, all you’ve got to do is go out there and perform’. That’s what I did.”

“My opponent today was no joke, everyone is an Olympian, but looking forward I know it will be a tough competition, and I want to be extremely prepared. I want to do my best performance every time.”

In the same weight class, Ivan VERIASOV of the Russian Olympic Committee secured a comfortable 5:0 win over Cameron’s Maxim YEGNONG NJEYO, gaining access to the quarterfinal where he is up to seed #2 Kamshybek KUNKABAYEV of Kazakhstan. 

In the Men’s Middle (69-75kg) round of 16, seed #3 Hebert SOUSA of Brazil stunned China’s Erbieke TOUHETA via a 3:2 split decision, booking a slot in the 1 August’s quarterfinal against Abilkhan AMANKUL (KAZ), who outscored Uzbekistan’s Fanat KAKHRAMONOV with a 5:0 win. 

Darrelle VALSAINT JR of Haiti and Gleb BAKSHI (ROC) also advanced to the category’s quarterfinals, today. They will meet on 1 August after beating David TSHAMA MWENEKABWE (COD) and Troy ISLEY (USA), respectively.

VALSAINT JR said: “It’s an honor to represent Haiti in the Olympics and I am on the verge of making history for my country, as the last time Haiti had a medal was 1928. I believe in myself and I know I can make history.”

Action at the Kokugikan Arena is due to start again tomorrow morning, 30 July, at 11:00 AM (Japan’s time).

Event schedule and results

Find the event schedule and the results here.  

Updated Draw Sheets

Men’s Middle (69-75kg)

Men’s Super Heavy (+91kg)

Women’s Fly (48-51kg)

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