The AIBA Women’s World Championship is set to begin in New Delhi’s KD Jhadav Indoor Stadium and this time the tournament will see record participation with 300 boxers from 70 countries. Boxers from over 16 countries, including Germany, USA, England, Ukraine, Panama, Australia, Thailand, Bulgaria, Somalia are coming early to adjust to the Indian conditions. The tournament, whose brand ambassador is MC Mary Kom, is going to see highest ever participation this year.
While the Indian squad comprises of Mary Kom (48 Kg), Pinky Jangra (51 Kg), Manisha Maun (54 Kg), Sonia (57 Kg), L Sarita Devi (60 Kg), Simranjit Kaur (64 Kg) among others, some of the best international talents like Italy’s Alessia Mesiano, Kazakh boxer Nazyum Kyzaiba, etc. will also compete to lift the trophy.
Here’s a list of 10 contestants to look out:
- MC Mary Kom– As the ambassador of the tournament, the Olympic boxer from Manipur will seek her sixth Women’s World Championship crown and second gold at home since 2006. The leader of the Indian squad, she is the only pugilist to have won a medal in each one of the six world championships.
- Alessia Mesiano– Italian amateur boxer, Mesiano became the AIBA World Champion in the 57 kg weight category in 2016 and is returning to attempt for her second win. She is the standout woman in featherweight category.
- Nazyum Kyzaiba– Kazakh pugilist and gold medallist Kyzaiba is looking to give a good fight in the 51 kg weight category. She won gold in the 2016 World Championship.
- Kay Scott– Australian boxer Scott is also eyeing a tournament victory. She is an elite amateur athlete, who is currently ranked 3rd internationally in the women’s light heavy division after winning silver at the Women’s World Championships in 2016 World Championship.
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- Peamwillai Laopeam– Thailand’s Laopeam is another talented boxer who the fans will see in action this year.
- Anastasia Beliakova– Russian pugilist and Rio Olympic bronze medallist Beliakova is also coming to the big event. She competed in the women’s lightweight event at the 2016 Summer Olympics.
- Manisha Maun– The 20-year-old fought against all odds to get in the Indian squad of BFI. She comes from Haryana’s conservative society and has impressed several in local boxing tournaments. She will represent India in the 54 kg weight category at the World Championships.
As the ambassador of the tournament, the Olympic boxer from Manipur will seek her sixth Women’s World Championship crown and second gold at home since 2006.
- Sarita Devi– Another legendary boxer from Manipur, Sarita Devi is a national champion and a former world champion in the lightweight class. She also became an Arjuna Awardee in 2009.
- Seema Poonia– The Rajasthan-born talent Poonia is a prominent boxer in the Indian boxing circuit. She won the Bronze Medal in 8th Asian Women Boxing Championship held in China.
- Ingrit Valencia– Colombian boxer Valencia won bronze at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, in the women’s flyweight. She was also the flag bearer for Colombia during the closing ceremony.
Picture credit- Prokerala