Boxer Vijender Singh wants to fight in 2020 Tokyo Olympics
Indian boxing star Vijender Singh wants to participate in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo if he does not get the chance to go for the upcoming 2016 Rio Olympics. Singh said that he will try his best to make the cut for the games in Brazil. The boxer was in the capital to announce the details about his bout against Wales-born boxer Kerry Hope for the WBO Asia Pacific Super Middleweight Championship.
Vijender’s hopes of winning another Olympic medal got a fresh lease of life when the International Boxing Association announced that professional boxers could compete at the 2016 Rio games. However, his hopes are hanging by a thread as compatriot Vikas Krishan is gunning for a birth in the 75 kg category and will be competing in the final qualifier in June. Should Krishan fail to qualify, Singh can grab a chance by competing in the professional boxers’ qualifiers to be held in Venezuela next month.
Speaking at the event about his Olympic aspirations, he said, “I want to go for the 2016 Rio games and make my country proud again. If I am not able to make the cut this time, I will definitely try for the games in 2020.” Singh has represented India in two Olympics and won the bronze medal at the 2008 Beijing games. He had previously said that he was undecided about competing in Rio.
Things have not been the best for the boxing contingent as far as the 2016 Rio games are concerned. India was represented by seven boxers at the 2012 London Olympics whereas only one, Shiva Thapa, has qualified for Rio till now. Vijender was asked by Sportskeeda about the possible reasons behind this sharp decline in the number of boxers, to which he said, “I do not think I am the right person to comment on this but I can surely say I have high hopes from Shiva Thapa.
“I also believe that the Indian boxers have a lot of talent and work incredibly hard to make their country proud,” he added.
Vijender Singh has enjoyed an excellent start to his professional career and has a perfect record at the moment (6-0). He has won all his fights till now by knockout and faces a tough challenge in Kerry Hope, who has more than a decade of professional boxing under his belt. Things got a little heated up between the two at the fight announcement event and both fighters took potshots at each other.
While Singh said he would want to finish this fight as early as possible and go home, Hope expressed his desire to teach his opponent a lesson or two about “different levels" that exist in the sport. Hope looks like a tough challenge for the Indian boxer, who has landed a title bout quite early in his career. It would be interesting to see Vijender’s endurance levels, should the match go on for more than eight rounds.
However, Vijender looked awfully confident of overcoming his opponent and said that “this title is mine.”