Lovlina Borgohain says she will start all over again in all aspects for Paris 2024


She had the time of her life in Tokyo with a medal in her Olympic debut being the icing on the cake, but Indian boxer Lovlina Borgohain says everything is “done and dusted now” and that she will start over in all aspects of his game for the Paris Edition in 2024.

In an exclusive interview with PTI, Borgohain, who won the welterweight bronze (69kg), spoke about the hardships she has endured to get to where she is, the joy of seeing the human spirit triumph. at the Games and how his regular life is now getting a lot more hectic thanks to fame overnight.

The 23-year-old from the small village of Baro Mukhia in the Golaghat district of Assam became just the third Indian boxer to finish on the Olympic podium, joining two of Indian boxing’s biggest icons – the six-time champion of the MC world Mary Kom and the highly decorated Vijender Singh.

She had vowed not to talk about her sacrifices until her campaign was over and that’s exactly what she did.

“My first sacrifice was to stay away from home for the past eight years and not be there for my family in times of trouble and watch from a distance. It’s the biggest sacrifice, ”she said.

“Personally, I have sacrificed certain desires that young people like me would have. For example, not eating things that so many others my age eat (fast food), I wouldn’t take time off from training to focus on the game. And that continued for eight years, ”he said. -she revealed.

She plans to take a vacation now that the job is done before preparing for a better medal in Paris in three years.

“These Olympics are over and dusted off. I will have to start from scratch in all aspects, not just one, ”she said, when asked what changes she would make to her technique after the Tokyo campaign.

Would those changes include extra force in his punches, which despite their accuracy seemed slightly weak in power, especially in the semi-final loss to reigning world and now Olympic champion Busenaz Surmeneli of Turkey?

“It’s not like strength and conditioning haven’t been worked on. It was happening. You could say that it was not up to what it ideally should have been. I was only able to work on my strength and conditioning for the last four months of what was a four year cycle.

“I have benefited from the work, but for something as big as the Olympics, four months is not enough. Uss se kuch nahi hota, you need such work in a four-year cycle, ”she explained.

Borgohain beat former world champion Nien-Chin Chen in the quarterfinals to reach the semi-final and with this triumph, she also beat the fear, which she had already felt before stepping into the ring.

The suppressed emotions eventually manifested in the form of a breathtaking scream as his hand was lifted by the referee.

“For so many years, several emotions were right inside me, I had internalized them. But during those Olympics, when I realized the support I was getting from the country every time I got in the ring and hit a punch, that cry was an ode to that support and that emotion, ”said she explained.

Lovlina Borgohain clenches her fist after winning her welterweight quarterfinal fight against Chinese Taipei’s Chen Nien-Chin at the Tokyo Olympics. (PTI)

“It was an expression of my own repressed emotions and also an ode to the support I received,” said the youngster.
The quarter-final victory was one of two special memories that Borgohain said will stay with her for the rest of her life.

The other being the very first gold medal shared at the Games where she saw the triumph of human values.

“The best memory is that I finally managed to beat a boxer who had beaten me four times before coming here. Beating her at the Olympics is a special moment in my career.

“The second was the gold medal shared by Qatar and Italy in the high jump. It showed that humanity is alive and that sport is the only medium that can connect two different countries like this, two human beings like this, ”she said.

Italy’s Gianmarco Tamberi and Qatari Mutaz Barshim shared the honors after both reaching the same height of 2.37 meters in the men’s high jump. It was Barshim who offered to share the first prize with Tamberi, his good friend, despite the fact that the officials proposed a jump-off to designate the winner.

The high jump allows for the gold to be shared if both athletes agree and Tamberi and Barshim became the first set in over 100 years to accept that.

“No matter how hard someone tries to cause friction, sport can bring everyone together, I learned that by watching this moment,” Borgohain said.

The youngster, who started out as a kickboxer, has had a tough preparation for the Games, enduring a COVID-19 attack while battling anxiety over her mother’s kidney transplant last year.

Borgohain couldn’t be there when the operation took place as she was training at the national camp and COVID made sure she missed a crucial training trip to Italy.

Was there ever a time when she felt it was too much to deal with?

“The difficulties of my life are not a story of the last few months, they have been there for eight years. I am sure they will be there even in the future. I never gave up hope and neither will I.

“I have always felt confident to face adversity and that will never change,” she said.

Someone who likes to meditate to keep calm, Borgohain also felt that mental health assistance is not necessary to tackle challenges if one has self-confidence.

“If you have confidence in yourself, then I don’t think you need help with mental health,” she said.

Finally, her life changed dramatically in a few days. Despite being a two-time world championship medalist, it was this Olympic bronze that made Borgohain a household name.

Realizing the spotlight that she will be in the spotlight, Borgohain said she would learn from the experience of several other high performing people to behave well as a public figure.

“There are a lot of models in India who have taken the burden of expectations on their shoulders. I would take inspiration from how they manage to accomplish my tasks, ”she said.

“I won’t change myself, I will change the color of my medal. I would always remain a boxing student, ”she concluded.

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