| New Delhi: Olympic bronze medal winning boxer M.C. Mary Kom admitted she was not comfortable fighting in the 51kg section in London and she will not hesitate to shift back to 48kg if the weight category is included in Rio de Janeiro.
The five-time World Champion won the bronze as a losing semi-finalist in London, becoming the first Indian women boxer to win an Olympic medal.
Speaking at a felicitation ceremony after her return Tuesday, the 29-year-old said she faced problems while facing the taller and bigger opponents in the 51kg.
"I won the medal and I am really happy. But I did not play well throughout the tournament," said the candid Mary Kom, who won her five World Championship title in 48, 46 and 45kg class.
Reflecting on her 6-11 loss to eventual gold medallist Nicola Adams of Britain, she said: "I felt I was not playing well. I was getting nervous, may be it was because of the home crowd supporting her (Nicola). I tried my best in the second third round and it was disappointing the referee didn`t award me points for some punches."
The mother of two had earlier hinted of retirement after the Olympics.
But after her memorable feat, she has put those thoughts on the backburner. The bronze medal has motivated her to carry on till the 2016 Olympics.
"The planning for Rio has already started. The good thing is the weight categories could be increased to six categories there and I can go back to the 48kg class. If that happens, I have a great chance winning a gold."
Women`s boxing made its Olympic debut in London and competition was held for three categories (51, 60 and 75kg).
Asked about the women`s boxing future, Mary Kom said there was enough talent in India, capable of performing at the big stage.
"If we have good facilities, good infrastructure, we can hope to win more medals at the Olympics.
"My medal is just the beginning and things can only get better. There are lot of women boxers at sub-junior and junior level.
"If you want them to do well internationally, you have to prepare and plan from now onwards," said Mary Kom, who runs a boxing academy in Manipur and has plans to extend it in the whole of northeast India.
First Published: Tuesday, August 14, 2012, 22:25