His was the Olympic medal that set the ball rolling for Indian boxing’s ascension to world-beating requirements.
Vijender Singh, nevertheless, has moved on from that life-changing bronze 13 summers in the past in Beijing as a result of “that is what mature folks do”.
“That is development, if you shed one id and embrace new issues, perceive issues which did not matter in some unspecified time in the future. It comes with time and accountability,” the middleweight boxer informed PTI in an unique chat.
“Life is a brand new lesson on a regular basis.”
However with one month to go for the Tokyo Olympics and because the world celebrates Olympic Day, one can not help make a journey down reminiscence lane to relive one of the vital iconic moments in Indian sports activities — the nation’s first Olympic medal in boxing.
“These have been golden days, we have been carefree, with out obligations. Our coaching, food plan and some buddies have been all that mattered,” the 35-year-old, who’s a three-time Olympian, stated as he recalled the build-up to the Video games in Beijing.
He made it to the large occasion in what was the final qualifying occasion after two failed makes an attempt.
In Beijing, he was the lone boxing medal hope left when the extra skilled Akhil Kumar misplaced within the quarterfinals, a shocker of a end result contemplating that he had overwhelmed the world champion — Sergey Vodopyanov — within the earlier spherical.
Shouldering unprecedented expectations, Vijender stored his calm to get the higher of Ecuador’s Carlos Gongora in his quarterfinal bout and historical past was created.
It meant the world to him at the moment however over a decade later, he would not even write Olympian in his social media bios, one thing that the majority different present or former athletes do.
“I had a very good Olympics, I gave my finest in Beijing, happily it translated right into a bronze medal. Alongside the way in which, it helped Indian boxing, good for everybody I say.
“However I’ve tried a number of issues after that. I acquired married, had youngsters, turned skilled, acquired into politics too. So, I do not see the purpose of trying again,” he defined.
“Ek purani kahawat hai hamare yahan, agar girna bhi ho to aage ko giro, peeche ko nahin. Peeche jaake ya peeche gir ke kya fayda (There may be an previous saying our aspect. Even for those who fall, fall ahead, not backwards),” he laughed as he tried to place issues in perspective.
On to trying forward then, how does he view the medal probabilities of the unprecedented 9 Indian boxers who’ve certified for the Video games this time?
“Actually sturdy. I do not observe beginner boxing very intently as a result of I’m occupied elsewhere too however from no matter I’ve seen, heard and skim, they appear good to win multiple medal,” Vijender stated.
“Amit (Panghal) is in super kind, Vikas (Krishan) appears sturdy and clearly you may have Mary Kom. It is a very completed line-up and I hope to catch some motion if not observe their progress utterly in Tokyo.
“Additionally among the many ladies, Simranjit Kaur is there. It’s good to see so many younger faces going to their maiden Olympics. I’m certain it might be a life-changing expertise for them,” added the star, who contested and misplaced the 2019 Lok Sabha elections from South Delhi on a Congress ticket.
That heartbreak however, Vijender stated he will not hand over on politics.
“It is not about profitable or shedding elections, it is about convictions. I’ve mine, many others have theirs and it’s by no means a foul factor to stay to these convictions. So, I might be round and do my finest,” he stated.
With COVID-19 casting a shadow on virtually every part that was as soon as regular on this planet, Vijender’s skilled profession can also be on maintain for now though he does hope to combat a minimum of as soon as later this 12 months.
“The state of affairs is such that I do not really feel comfy travelling proper now. I’m joyful to be daddy to my sons, it’s priceless time,” he stated.
However as soon as the world returns to normalcy, Vijender has a dream that he hopes to perform some day.
“I wish to climb Mount Everest some day. It is a dream and I have not completed something to get began on it simply but however I hope some day I can. That may be some achievemnt, is not it?” he signed off.