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‘Always had problems against southpaws’

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Vikas Krishan is a boxer of high calibre. The middleweight boxer, a former World championship medallist and an Asian Games winner, has stepped into the big shoes of Vijender Singh and holds the promise of replicating his Bhiwani mate's feat of the Beijing Olympics in Rio de Janerio next year.

However, Vikas, who recently bagged a silver medal in the Asian championship in Bangkok to qualify for the World championship to be held in Doha from October 5 to 15, has a couple of issues to address. He needs to overcome his inherent weakness against pugilists of his own tribe, the southpaws, and add more power to his punches.

Analysing his game following the loss in the tough 75kg final bout in Bangkok, Vikas said, “When I knew that my opponent (Bektemir Melikuziev of Uzbekistan) was only 19 years of age, I thought I would kill him. But I forgot that I had won the Asian Games gold when I was 19. I lost because of my overconfidence.”

Twenty-three-year-old Vikas, also a former World youth champion, said he must train with formidable left-handers in order to improve his game.

“I always had problems against the southpaws — be it in the World championships or the Olympics or the Asian championship now.

“We do not have good southpaws,” Vikas said on his arrival from Bangkok on Monday.

Unsure of trip

Vikas was keen to go on a proposed training stint in Kazakhstan, but was unsure of the trip primarily due to the administrative logjam in the Indian federation.

“Good training exposures always help. Thanks to the support of JSW Sport, I could train in the UK before the Asian championship and it had its effect.”

Vikas said he was working on increasing his weight and training to make his punches more powerful.

In the run-up to the World championship, which would be the qualifying event for the Olympics, Vikas said, “I am sure of qualifying this time. I will guard against wasting energy and try to win a bout before it goes into the third round.”

Chief National coach G.S. Sandhu was pleased with the boxers’ effort in the Asian championship as India, participating as International Boxing Association (AIBA) team due to its internal wrangling, landed one silver and three bronze medals (L. Devendro Singh 49kg, Shiva Thapa 56kg and Satish Kumar +91kg) apart from six Worlds qualifying places (four medallists plus quarterfinalists Madan Lal 52kg and Manoj Kumar 64kg).

“Overall, we were fourth. In the present circumstances with the federation not working properly, it is a commendable result,” said Sandhu.

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Printable version | Jan 24, 2020 10:33:29 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/other-sports/always-had-problems-against-southpaws/article7626368.ece

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