BOXING

‘I have made up my mind’: India boxer Vikas Krishan to turn professional by end of 2018

The 25-year-old has had an accomplished career, which includes an Asian Games gold, a world championship bronze, Asian Championships silver and bronze.

One of India’s most decorated amateur boxers, Vikas Krishan on Wednesday said he will turn professional by the end of this year, putting into action a plan he originally wanted to implement after the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Speaking to PTI after confirming his maiden Commonwealth Games medal by advancing to the semi-finals in Gold Coast, Vikas said he is now fully prepared to go ahead with his long-held ambition.

“I have made up my mind, I am turning professional at the end of this year. I will be holding discussions with the federation and I am hopeful that they would be supportive. I don’t want to do anything which they resent,” the middle-weight 75kg category boxer said.

The 25-year-old Haryana-boxer has had an accomplished career, which includes an Asian Games gold medal, a world championships bronze medal, Asian Championships silver and bronze and a quarterfinal finish at the Olympics.

He had spoken about turning professional after the Rio Games but changed his plans when he could not secure a medal.

“This time, I am quite sure about it. I think this is right time because Olympics is no longer off-limits for professional boxers and that takes care of my dream of an Olympic medal. I just hope the federation supports me the way it has always supported me,” he said.

Vikas has looked a stronger and more agile boxer in recent competitions and was quite compact in his win over Benny Muzio on Wednesday. The standout feature of his tactics today was a solid guard, which thwarted almost every attack thrown at him.

“Yes I have worked on my guard, I have become more sure of when to lower it and when to go into a shell. The timing has improved for me. I didn’t pay enough attention to it in the past,” he said.

“My strength and endurance has also improved so things are going pretty well for me. A lot of it has been possible because of the federation’s support, I am really thankful to them,” he added.

Next up for Vikas in the semifinals of the ongoing Games is Northern Ireland’s Steven Donelley.

Support our journalism by subscribing to Scroll+ here. We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content BY 

What are racers made of?

Grit, strength and oodles of fearlessness.

Sportspersons are known for their superhuman discipline, single-minded determination and the will to overcome all obstacles. Biographies, films and documentaries have brought to the fore the behind-the-scenes reality of the sporting life. Being up at the crack of dawn, training without distraction, facing injuries with a brave face and recovering to fight for victory are scenes commonly associated with sportspersons.

Racers are no different. Behind their daredevilry lies the same history of dedication and discipline. Cornering on a sports bike or revving up sand dunes requires the utmost physical endurance, and racers invest heavily in it. It helps stave off fatigue and maintain alertness and reaction time. It also helps them get the most out of their racecraft - the entirety of a racer’s skill set, to which years of training are dedicated.

Racecraft begins with something as ‘simple’ as sitting on a racing bike; the correct stance is the key to control and manoeuvre the bike. Riding on a track – tarmac or dirt is a great deal different from riding on the streets. A momentary lapse of concentration can throw the rider into a career ending crash.

Physical skill and endurance apart, racers approach a race with the same analytical rigour as a student appearing in an exam. They conduct an extensive study of not just the track, but also everything around it - trees, marshal posts, tyre marks etc. It’s these reference points that help the racer make braking or turning decisions in the frenzy of a high-stakes competition.

The inevitability of a crash is a reality every racer lives with, and seeks to internalise this during their training. In the immediate aftermath of the crash, racers are trained to keep their eyes open to help the brain make crucial decisions to avoid collision with other racers or objects on the track. Racers that meet with accidents can be seen sliding across the track with their heads held up, in a bid to minimise injuries to the head.

But racecraft is, of course, only half the story. Racing as a profession continues to confound many, and racers have been traditionally misunderstood. Why would anyone want to pour their blood, sweat and tears into something so risky? Where do racers get the fearlessness to do laps at mind boggling speed or hurtle down a hill unassisted? What about the impact of high speeds on the body day after day, or the monotony of it all? Most importantly, why do racers race? The video below explores the question.

Play


The video features racing champions from the stable of TVS Racing, the racing arm of TVS Motor Company, which recently completed 35 years of competitive racing in India. TVS Racing has competed in international rallies and races across some of the toughest terrains - Dakar, Desert Storm, India Baja, Merzouga Rally - and in innumerable national championships. Its design and engineering inputs over the years have also influenced TVS Motors’ fleet in India. You can read more about TVS Racing here.

This article has been produced by Scroll Brand Studio on behalf of TVS Racing and not by the Scroll editorial team.