I want to become the first Indian boxer to win an Olympic gold: Vikas Krishan Yadav

Vikas Krishan Yadav is one of the boxers who has qualified for the Tokyo Olympics 2021
Vikas Krishan Yadav is one of the boxers who has qualified for the Tokyo Olympics 2021

Indian boxer Vikas Krishan Yadav has stated that his biggest aim is to become the first Indian pugilist to win an Olympics gold medal.

Vikas Krishan Yadav is one of the many Indian boxers who have qualified for the Tokyo Olympics that are scheduled to be held next year in July. The two-time Olympian Yadav aims to finally make his appearance on the winners' podium when he takes to the ring next year.

Yadav recently appeared on In the Sportlight, an online interview series hosted by Indian table tennis player Mudit Dani. He spoke about his boxing journey so far and his recent foray into professional boxing that he hopes could provide him an edge over other amateur boxers in Tokyo.

Vikas Krishan Yadav is focused on the Tokyo Olympics 2021 next year as he is set to become only the second Indian boxer after Vijender Singh to qualify for three Olympics in a row. He is currently undergoing training in Virginia, United States and plans to continue to compete on the professional circuit before getting back into amateur boxing ahead of the Olympics.

"I am focusing on learning a new skill-set from professional boxing that will help me at the Olympics. Only four-five months ahead of the Olympics, I will return to amateur boxing and shape myself and play two-three tournaments to get in the groove," said Yadav.

Hailing from a village in the Hisar district of Haryana, Vikas Krishan Yadav was pushed towards boxing by his father when they moved to Bhiwani, the hub of Indian boxing, and joined the Bhiwani Boxing Club at a young age of 10. He continued his training there and won his first International medal in 2020 when he clinched the gold at the Asian Youth Boxing Championships held in Tehran, Iran.

He won a bronze medal at the 2011 World Amateur Boxing Championships continuing his rise on the big stage and soon secured qualificationfor the 2012 London Olympics. However, his first run at the Olympics was a short-lived on as he was eliminated in the preliminary round following which he took a year off from the sport.

After his return to the ring, Vikas Krishan Yadav continued to do well, winning medals at the 2014 Asian Games for India as well as the Asian Boxing Championships held in 2015. He secured the qualification for his second straight Olympics (Rio 2016) in the 75 kg category after winning the bronze medal at the Olympics qualifiers event held in Baku, Azerbaijan.

In Rio, he progressed well through the initial rounds until losing in the crucial quarterfinal bout against Uzbekistan's Bektemir Melikuziev.

Vikas Krishan Yadav won the gold medal at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games and then decided to make his entry into the professional boxing circuit, signing for Top Rank boxing in 2019.

Vikas Krishan Yadav has a 2-0 record in pro-boxing, having won his bouts against Steven Andrade and Noah Kidd, both American pugilists. His bout against Noah Kidd was at the famous Madison Square Garden on a card that was headlined by British professional boxer Amir Khan.

"My last win was at the Madison Square Garden in front of a packed crowd and it certainly was a memorable moment in my career to represent my nation and win on the big stage," said Yadav.

2012 Arjuna Awardee Vikas Krishan Yadav will be part of the Indian boxing contingent that will also have the likes of MC Mary Kom, Amit Panghal, Manish Kaushik and many others. I will certainly challenge for podium spots in Tokyo.

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Edited by S Chowdhury
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