'Khel Ratna' Vijender hopes to end World C'ship drought

Updated: 28 August 2009 15:15 IST

Vijender Singh is aiming to add another first to his name by clinching India's maiden medal at the September 1-12 World Championships in Milan.

'Khel Ratna' Vijender hopes to end World C'ship drought

New Delhi:

The first boxer to win the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, Olympic bronze medallist Vijender Singh is aiming to add another first to his name by clinching India's maiden medal at the September 1-12 World Championships in Milan.

"We have achieved a lot of firsts in Indian boxing in the past couple of years and form and fitness permitting, I would get our first medal in World Championships this time," Vijender told PTI.

Vijender delayed his departure for the blue-ribbon event by a couple of days to attend the National Sports Awards ceremony on Saturday. He would reach just a day before the event but rubbished suggestions that it would affect his performance.

"There have been times when I have reached on the day of the tournament, so it doesn't matter," the middle weight pugilist said.

But ending the medal drought is not the world number two's only concern. Vijender said he is also looking for a lucrative contract with one of the franchisees for the World Series of Boxing slated for September 2010.

"It's a huge opportunity and I want to make the most of it. It is important that I get picked up by a good franchisee, although my first preference is India," he said.

"WSB is a revolutionary concept and boxers like me stand to gain a lot out of it," Vijender added.

From the relative anonymity in which he received the Arjuna award in 2007, Vijender would walk into the Rashtrapati Bhawan as a star to get the Khel Ratna on Saturday.

"But there are dreams still left to be accomplished. and one of them is to get a second Olympic medal in 2012 (London Games). I am sure I will achieve it," he said.

The Haryana boxer revealed even though he is not a cricket buff as such, he admires Sachin Tendulkar for the way the batting great has carried himself both on and off the field.

"I don't watch cricket much but I admire Sachin Tendulkar. I like the way he has conducted himself over the years. He has been such a huge star for so long but has not had a single controversy against his name," said Vijender.

"He is somebody you can look upto," he added.



Topics : Boxing
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