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Mary Kom denies retirement rumors, says age limit prevents her from Olympics participation

Published at :January 25, 2024 at 12:47 PM
Modified at :January 25, 2024 at 1:23 PM
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(Courtesy : BFI)

Ajay Gandhar


Six-time World champion said she still has hunger to represent India.

Indian boxing legend Mary Kom has clarified that she has not announced her retirement from the sport, contrary to some media reports that quoted her saying she was forced to quit due to her age limit.

The six-time world champion and Olympic bronze medallist stated on Thursday, January 25, that she was misquoted during a school event in Dibrugarh on Wednesday, where she was motivating children to pursue their dreams in sports.

“I still have a hunger to achieve in sports but the age limit in the Olympics doesn’t allow me to participate though I can carry on with my sport. I am still focusing on my fitness and whenever I announce retirement I will inform everyone,” Mary Kom said.

The 41-year-old boxer, who competes in the women’s flyweight category, is ineligible to participate in the Olympics as the age limit for the event is 40. She had expressed her disappointment over this rule in the past, saying that she still had the desire and ability to compete at the highest level.

Mary Kom, widely regarded as one of the greatest female boxers of all time, has an illustrious career spanning over two decades. She has won a record eight medals at the World Championships, including six golds, making her the most successful boxer, female, in the event’s history.

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She also became the first Indian woman to win an Olympic medal in boxing when she claimed the bronze at the 2012 London Games. She followed it up with another historic feat when she became the first female boxer to win a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in 2018.

Mary Kom has also dominated the Asian scene, winning seven medals at the Asian Championships, including six golds, and a gold medal at the Asian Games 2014.

Despite her age, Mary Kom has shown no signs of slowing down, as she won a bronze medal at the Asian Championships in 2021, proving that she is still a force to reckon with in the ring.

Mary Kom, who is also a former Rajya Sabha MP and a Padma Vibhushan awardee, has inspired generations of young boxers in India and around the world with her achievements and perseverance. She has also been involved in various social causes, such as promoting education, health, and women’s empowerment.

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