CWG 2018

CWG 2018 Boxing: Mary Kom, Gaurav Solanki and Vikas Krishan win gold medals

The 35-year-old Mary Kom won gold on her Commonwealth Games debut.

Mary Kom, Gaurav Solanki and Vikas Krishan won boxing gold medals for India at the ongoing Commonwealth Games in New Delhi on Saturday.

Mary Kom won the Commonwealth Games medal in her first appearance at the quadrennial extravaganza as she defeated Northern Ireland’s Kristina O’ Hara in the final of the women’s 45-48 kg category.

(Read more: Follow all the updates on an action-packed day ten for India here.)

At 35, Mary became the first Indian woman to win a gold at the Commonwealth Games. She was cautious at the start, and just about edged the first round. More aggressive in the second round, Mary displayed good defence against a taller opponent who tried to use her reach to unsettle the Indian.

In the end, Mary rode out the third round to notch up an unanimous victory, overcoming the disappointment of not making the 2014 Commonwealth Games squad.

Gaurav Solanki won India’s second boxing gold of the day after he defeated Northern Ireland’s Brendan Irvine in the 52 kg category. Solanki was aggressive from the outset, as he threw a flurry of punches in the first round.

His defence held up as the Irishman was unable to breach it, Solanki winning 4-1 on a split decision. Amit Panghal won the silver in the 46-49 kg category as the boxer appeared to tire after the first round.

Panghal lost to England’s Yafai Galal 3-1 in a split decision, the 22-year-old Panghal had won bronze earlier at the Asian Championships.

Manish Kaushik, the favourite for the 60 kg lost out after a split decision went in favour of Australian Harry Garside. Kaushik looked to have got the better round of the two in the final couple of rounds, but the 2017 national champion had to be content with a silver medal.

In the evening session, Vikas, a former Asian Games gold-medallist and world bronze-medallist, dominated Cameroon’s Dieudonne Wilfred Ntsengue to claim the third gold for India.

The technically superior Indian stuck to his usual tactic of taking slow control of the proceedings, trading with caution first up before letting it rip to take the opponent by surprise.

Vikas
plans to turn professional by the end of this year and the gold here just adds to his accomplished amateur run.

Satish Kumar lost on points to Englishman’s Frazer Clarke, as the super heavyweight went down 0:5 on points. Kumar won India’s third silver and sixth medal of the day.

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.