There isn’t anything left to prove for 38-year-old legendary boxer MC Mark Kom, but she still has a dream to bag an Olympic medal for her country.
Mangte Chungneijang Mary Kom may have won her first gold medal in boxing at the 2014 Asian Games, in Incheon, South Korea, after beating Kazakhstan’s Zhaina Shekerbekova in the flyweight (51 kg) final or claimed an unprecedented fifth gold medal (48 kg) at the Asian Boxing Confederation (ASBC) women’s boxing championships in Vietnam…
Or won a gold in the 2018 Commonwealth Games in the women’s light flyweight 48 kg category, or even created history by becoming the first woman to win 6 World Championships at the 10th AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships in New Delhi.
But one thing that continues to be elusive for the champion Indian boxer is an Olympic medal.
“For so many years I have been fighting. I have won so many medals. But I have not won an Olympic gold. That has been my dream. I am still not satisfied with what I have achieved,” Mary Kom said in an interview. “I have a dream to win a gold at the Olympics. That’s what I am working for. First, I need to secure a medal at Tokyo and then go for the higher one, the highest one.”
These are the same sentiments which Mary echoed after she became the most successful boxer in Women’s World Championships history following a unanimous 5-0 win against Hanna Okhota in the 48 kg category summit clash of the Women’s Boxing World Championships at the K.D. Jadhav Indoor stadium in India on Nov 24, 2018.
By doing so, she broke her tie of five golds and one bronze with Ireland’s Katie Taylor and also levelled up with Cuban men’s legend Felix Savon on the gold count.
“I am a little bit emotional today,” she said after the win at the Women’s World Championships. “There is no (48kg) weight category in the Olympic Games. Because of your love and support, I feel I will be able to qualify for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. Four years ago, I was not able to qualify for Rio. I am still suffering from that.”
Everyone, including Mary, knows that it would not be easy by any stretch of imagination, given her age and injuries, but like Mary has done all throughout her life, she has dared to dream again, to dream of an Olympic medal for her country.