A trial will be held between six-time women’s world boxing champion MC Mary Kom and youngster Nikhat Zareen to decide India’s representation in the 51kg category at the Tokyo Olympic qualifiers next year.
According to a report, the decision was taken after a meeting involving officials of Boxing Federation of India (BFI) members, Sports Authority of India (SAI), officials from Sports Ministry and foreign coaches Raffaele Bergamasco and Santiago Nievam reports The Times of India.
Zareen has been demanding a trial since the return of Mary Kom from the women’s world championships in Russia this year where the veteran clinched a bronze medal. As per the BFI rules, only the gold and silver medalists from the women’s championships will be given a direct entry for the qualifiers, rest will have to appear for trials.
However, controversy erupted when BFI president Ajay Singh spoke of same rules for men and women boxers following which Mary Kom also backed his statement. However, post the meeting on Thursday, the decision has been communicated to Singh that it’s too late to change the rules now and the trial will be held in December.
“We have stuck to our rules. There won’t be any going back on it and everything is now clear, no confusion at all. The trial will preferably happen after the Indian Boxing League (IBL), which is scheduled from December 2 to 21, 2019,” a source informed. There’s an interesting point. Bergamasco told the gathering that Mary Kom never had a problem giving a trial against Zareen and all this drama happened following the BFI president’s statement. Mary Kom started backing his statement. In fact, coaches stated that they were always in favour of a trial,” a source was quoted as saying by TOI.