TODAY -

I will leave boxing after 2016 Olympics: Sarita Devi
Source: The Sangai Express / Press Trust of India

New Delhi, August 20 2014: Commonwealth Games silver medallist Laishram Sarita Devi plans to hang up her boxing gloves after the 2016 Olympic Games to be held in Rio De Janeiro and said that she will certainly work towards an Olympic medal.

"I am into the game for a long time.

I have had won five Asian championships and a lot of other medals, now its time to bid adieu.

But the only thing I don't have is an Olympic medal, so I really want to participate and bring some glory for the country," Sarita told PTI here today.

The 29-year-old boxer also talked about how challenging it was for her to win a medal in the recently concluded Commonwealth Games after becoming a mother.

Sarita arriving at Imphal Airport on 11 August 2014
Sarita arriving at Imphal Airport on 11 August 2014 :: Pix - A Arun


"It was very difficult for me this time, both mentally and physically.

I was out of the game for such a long time, it was really tough to come back.

But thanks to god and my family who have been with me all through the time," she said.

"You know I am playing for a long time, but this time was the toughest.

I had to stay away from my baby for such a long time.

It was five months, and when I returned after the games, he came to the airport with my brother and mother but the sad part is he could not recognize me," said the mother of a one year five months old baby boy.

Arjun awardee Sarita also could not hide her happiness at the fact that a Hindi film is being made on her friend and fellow boxer Mary Kom.

"Now it is proved India is not only a cricket frenzy nation.

When I and Mary started together, people used to see us differently, because there was a common notion that women cannot come into a sport like boxing.

But we fought, we fought hard and after overcoming so many hurdles today we are being recognized.

This is a lot of encouragement," she said.

When asked about her plans after retirement, she said,"I already have an academy where I train young kids.

After retirement I want to completely focus on it so that I can make new Mary Koms who will take boxing forward in this country." Sarita, who comes from a farming background, also shared her concern for the next generation, who want to come into the sport.

"A lot of young people are now aspiring for the game and most of them come from humble backgrounds.

Boxing is not at all easy, it needs a lot of strength, sincerity and diligence.

The government is doing its bit but I think everyone should come forward to support it," she said.


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