Six-time champion MC Mary Kom (51kg) on Saturday settled for a bronze medal in the World Women's Boxing Championships after losing to Turkey's Busenaz Cakiroglu in an intense semifinal bout in Ulan Ude. Mary Kom, seeded third, lost 1-4 to second seed Cakiroglu, who is the reigning European Championships and European Games gold-medallist. The Indian contingent sought a review of the decision but the appeal was turned down by the International Boxing Association's (AIBA) technical committee. "How and why. Let the world know how much right and wrong the decision is," Mary Kom later tweeted expressing her anguish at the loss.
Both the boxers seemed hesitant to make the first move in the opening round but Mary Kom had the edge in counter-attacks as Cakiroglu struggled to make her height advantage count. The second round followed a similar pattern as far as the tactics went but Cakiroglu seemed the sharper of the two. In the final three minutes, both the boxers upped the ante but Cakiroglu became the dominant aggressor eventually.
Despite this loss, it was a stupendous campaign for the 36-year-old Mary Kom and added to her long list of accomplishments. This bronze is her first world medal in the 51kg category. Besides six world titles, Mary Kom's incredible career is also studded with an Olympic bronze medal (2012), five Asian titles, gold medals at the Asian Games and the Commonwealth Games, besides numerous other international top finishes.
Later in the evening session, Manju Rani (48kg) will be up against Thailand's Chuthamat Raksat, who upstaged fifth seed Yuliyanova Asenova in the quarterfinals. Jamuna Boro (54kg) will take on top seed and former Asian Games bronze-medallist Huang Hsiao-Wen of Chinese Taipei. Last edition's bronze-medallist Lovlina Borgohain (69kg) will face China's Yang Liu, who took down top seed Chen Nien-Chin.
Entering into this edition, Mary Kom had six gold and a silver in her kitty. "It is difficult to say (what the result would be in the semifinals) but I think I have the capability to go the full distance and win a gold. Let's see," she said. "The whole country is supporting me like always, I think that should also work for me. Why wouldn't I win with that huge support?" she added.