Women boxers gather at Indira Gandhi stadium

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> More than 148 women boxers for the quarter finals of the Second National Women's Boxing championships.

Updated: February 25, 2007 08:37 IST
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New Delhi:

More than 148 women boxers representing over 20 states from all across the subcontinent gathered today at the Indira Gandhi Indoor stadium for the quarter finals of the Second National Women's Boxing championships. There were 12 weight categories and Manipur appeared to be the favourites to make a clean sweep of most of the categories. Leading the Manipur team was winner of the silver medal in the women's world boxing championships Mery Kom, who made short of her bout today and completely floored her opponent Kanaka Durga from Andhra Pradesh in the first round itself. An optimistic Mery however feels that boxers abroad are much faster and stronger. "The Eurpoean boxers are very fast and strong but we are catching up with them," said Mery Kom. For the girls from Chhatisgarh, it was a debut bout at the national level and one that cost Jorjina Lata quite a few painful punches. "I was a little scared in the beginning but then I put it all behind me. We had very little practice before coming here and I hoped we would do well, " said Jorjina Lata. And given some time their coach feels that their team would even be ready for the Olympics. "This was the first time for the girls and they had very little ring experience. They had played at the State level before this and had qualified at the quarterfinals, " said CM Thakur, Coach, Chhatisgarh. You wouldn’t want to mess around with these young women and as they punch and spar and rain blows on each other what seems to be uppermost on their minds is to win a medal for their state. But that will have to wait till Sunday when the finals will be played.

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