CWG: Indomitable Mary Kom storms into final
Gold Coast, April 11
The indomitable M C Mary Kom (48kg) stormed into the final to remain well on course to claim India’s first Commonwealth Games gold in women’s boxing here on Wednesday.
The five-time world champion and Olympic bronze-medallist defeated a defensive Anusha Dilrukshi Koddithuwak of Sri Lanka 5-0 to make the summit clash in her debut appearance at the Games.
Among the men, debutant Gaurav Solanki (52kg) made the semifinals to be assured of a medal.
“It was difficult in the sense that this girl would just not come to me. I had to be careful becauseshe was perhaps waiting for me to let my guard down,” Mary Kom said after the bout.
It was a battle of veterans between the 35-year-old Indian and the 39-year-old Koddithuwak.
Mary Kom, also a sitting Rajya Sabha MP in India, prevailed in a rather dull contest where clean punches were few and far.
Despite the height advantage, Koddithuwak struggled to connect for most part. She picked up pace in the final three minutes but Mary Kom drew from her own wealth of experience to thwart her.
The Olympic bronze-medallist Indian will square off against Northern Ireland’s Kristina O’Hara in the final. O’Hara, a carer at a nursing home in her country, defeated 19-year-old New Zealander Tasmyn Benny in the semifinals.
However, another Indian veteran L Sarita Devi (60kg) failed to secure a medal after going down to Australia’s Anja Stridsman.
The former world and Asian champion Indian found tee crowd favourite’s power difficult to handle and was also troubled by her ill-fitting headguard.