I’ve never got publicity like this: Mary Kom

Zeenews Sports Bureau

New Delhi: M C Mary Kom created history at the London Olympics winning the bronze medal in women’s boxing and the publicity she got was something even she did not expect.

The boxer in an exclusive interview to Zee News said: "I never got such publicity even after being 5-time world champion".

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After receiving a frenzied reception at Indira Gandhi International Airport a visibly overwhelmed Mary Kom said, “After winning a medal at the London Olympics I got an arousing welcome in India and more recognition this time as compared to the last time. Moreover, Northeast also gave me a warm welcome and whole of India recognized me so I’m very happy”

MC Mary Kom got this kind of recognition only after women’s boxing made its debut at the Olympics in London. She was a major medal hopeful before the Games and she delivered with a bronze only to lose to the eventual gold medal winner Nicola Adam.

On being asked how she felt after winning a medal, Mary Kom said “I have played earlier as well for the country, but never got a medal in Olympics. So winning a medal in London was something which I always wanted. The kind of reception I have received here is something which I have never ever got before.”

The diminutive boxer from Manipur is a mother two and had made a spectacular comeback by winning the World Championship in 2008. She had won the title earlier in 2002, 2005, 2006 and also in 2010.

She has been dominating the women’s boxing for nearly 10 years and finally her moment of glory came at the London Olympics. But this feisty boxer is not done yet and is aiming the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics for another medal.

Mary Kom promised that she will change the color of the medal in Rio de Janeiro. She said “I’m happy though not satisfied as I could not achieve what I wanted too, but I will try next time for sure.”

Earlier, Mary Kom was accorded a rousing reception on arrival at the Indira Gandhi International Airport. Mary Kom flew in from London with the entire boxing contingent, including the men`s team which could not win a single medal at the Summer Games.

"It is very special to win an Olympic medal. The road to it was a tough one. I am overwhelmed with the support that I have got. I am excited and scared as well with the huge amount of people here. Everyone knows me now. I might not look like an Indian but I surely feel like one," an emotional Mary Kom had told reporters about her bronze winning feat in the London Olympics.

The 29-year-old Manipuri was accompanied by her husband Onler Kom and mother Akham Kom.

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