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Indian women boxers aim to retain World crown

Ningbo City, China, Nov 21 (UNI) Spearheaded by three-time World Champion M C Mary Kom, Indian eves will aim to defend their title at the 5th World Women's Boxing Championships which kicks off here tomorrow.

The Indian girls won four gold, a silver and three bronze medals to beat favourites and defending champions Russia to bag the overall title in the 2006 World Championships in New Delhi.

Mary Kom was one of the stars of that victory, grabbing the gold in the 46 kg category. However, the pint-sized Manipuri is a bit off-colour in recent times after being away from the sport for almost two years to take care of her twin babies.

She failed to defend her Asian Championship crown in September but bounced back to clinch the national title this month.

India, who competed in all 13 categories last time, is fielding a reduced seven-member squad featuring six boxers from the 2006 team.

Apart from Mary Kom, other medal hopefuls for India will be L Sarita Devi (52kg), who will aim to defend the gold medal she won two years ago. Last edition's feather weight division silver medallist N Usha is also in the team.

Boxer Chotto Laura, who won a bronze in New Delhi, would be hoping to better her performance in the 50kg category.

The Haryana pugilist, however, is not in great shape of late, losing in the quarterfinals of the Asian Championships and failing to defend her national title as well.


Story first published: Friday, November 21, 2008, 15:04 [IST]
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