Six-time world champion MC Mary Kom defeated Nikhat Zareen in the 51kg category final in Delhi on Saturday to earn a place in Indian squad for Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualifiers. With this, Nikhat’s dream of playing in Tokyo Olympics was shattered and it was confirmed that Mary Kom will represent India in this category from India. In a bout where each of the puglist failed to land more punches, 2012 London Olympics silver medallist Mary Kom won 9-1.
The Olympic qualifiers will be played in Wuhan, China from February 3 to 14 in February next year. Both boxers had earlier won their first round matches on Friday in a unanimous decision. Former junior world champion Nikhat Zareen defeated Jyoti Gulia on Friday, while multiple-time Asian champion Mary Kom defeated Ritu Grewal.
Following the lax attitude of the Indian Boxing Federation on the selection policy for the Olympic qualifier, Zareen had created an uproar a few weeks earlier, demanding a trial against six-time world champion. MC Mary Kom said in reply that she would follow the BFI policy, which in the end decided to conduct trials.
BFI President Ajay Singh made a stir at an honor ceremony by announcing that Mary Kom would be selected for the Olympic qualifier without a trial due to her consistent good performance at the international level. Angered by this, Zareen demanded a fair chance.
Mary had to miss out on a spot in 2016 Rio Olympics after she lost in the second round of world championship.