Boxing becomes very controversial because it’s a point scoring game: Kiren Rijiju

Boxing is often laced with controversy. Whether in India or outside, many pugilists have complained of biased results. Sometimes, heated arguments were exchanged between the federations after not getting the favourable results. Boxers, too, lost their tempers inside the ring and slammed the refrees or judges.

Union sports minister Kiren Rijiju also shared his views on uncertainties in boxing while speaking to India’s elite boxers in a motivating and encouraging online video interactive session on Sunday.

“Boxing sometimes becomes very controversial because it’s a point scoring game. It is not who throw how much distance, or who runs faster. So boxing is a game it is bound to generate more interest and at times it bounds to create controversy. So let us not get de-motivated that there are controversies in boxing.

“Ajay ji (BFI president) and I were discussing the other day that there were controversies in past in Indian boxing Olympic qualification and all. I think, controversies are part of this sport and sometimes it gets more interesting when there are controversies. So boxing as a game is going to be like this,” he said.

Rijiju further acknowledged efforts by the athletes and said boxing will play a vital role in making India sporting powerhouse and Top-10 nation in the medals tally at Olympic Games.

He also heaped praises on the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) and its president Ajay Singh for their efforts to keep the boxers engaged with online coaching sessions despite COVID-19 pandemic in the country. The online video conference was attended by around 140 elite Indian pugilists along with coaches and officials.

The minister also informed that the government is planning to allow elite athletes to resume their training at the earliest in order to keep them ready for future competitions. “I have discussions with my officers. We are planning out a way to start functioning as soon as possible. I thought first of all we should allow practice for the players who have qualified for the Olympics and who will be participating in the qualifiers or important championships. We can’t open all the coaching centres, so we will allow only for elite athletes. Junior camps have to wait for some time as safety will be priority,” he concluded.

All the top elite boxers, including Mary Kom, Amit Panghal, Pooja Rani, Simranjeet Kaur, Lovlina Borgohain, Satish Kumar, Manish Kaushik, participated in an interaction along with High Performance Director Santiago Nieva, foreign coach Raffaele Bergamasco, head coaches and support staff.

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