Mary Kom steals the thunder

Special Correspondent
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Mary Kom... hogging the limelight. — Photo: PTI
Mary Kom... hogging the limelight. — Photo: PTI

The secretary-general of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA), Randhir Singh, said there was time till February 2011 for India to bid for the 2019 Asian Games.

Randhir, who was besieged by the media at the flag-hoisting ceremony at the Games Village here on Thursday, revealed that the document that had been presented to the sports ministry was actually an approved bid document for the 2014 Asian Games.

Randhir, also the secretary-general of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and a member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), said it was for the government to work out the financial implications, escalation etc., as the IOA would mainly be depending on the statistics being generated from the current Asian Games hosted by China.

Ideal venue

Observing that there was no need to invent the wheel all over again and emphasising that Delhi would be the ideal venue as there was infrastructure already in place, Randhir said it would help avoid additional expenditure in setting up a new city apart from helping Delhi fine-tune itself following the lessons learnt from hosting the Commonwealth Games.

About Gagan Narang tiring himself out by carrying the national flag at the opening ceremony on the eve of his competition in air rifle, both Randhir and IOA president Suresh Kalmadi said that it would entirely be Narang's call.

However, in case Narang, who has been clear about carrying the national flag, changes his mind, Kalmadi said Saina Nehwal would be the flag-bearer.

None of the shooters or tennis players, busy with their training, attended the flag-hoisting ceremony in which five-time World champion Mary Kom stole the thunder by sporting a saree and a beaming smile much to the delight of the cameras.

Nice feeling

“It is nice to wear a saree. I always wanted to, but did not know how to do it,” said Mary Kom.

She said she would do her best and go for gold in the 51-kg section in which she would be competing for the first time in her career.

“There are many good boxers in this weight category and the world champion is from China,” said Mary Kom about Ren Cancan, known for her quick and sharp punches.

With a hearty smile, Mary Kom said she had the luxury of adding weight as well as strength to her punches.

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