Indian boxing legend Mary Kom retires: ‘Because of age limit, I can’t compete’

Six-time World Champion and 2012 Olympic medallist Mangte Chungneijang Mary Kom on Wednesday announced her retirement from boxing.

Mary Kom(AIBA)

Mary Kom hung her boxing gloves as the International Boxing Association’s (IBA) rules allow male and female boxers to fight in elite-level competition only till the age of 40.

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During an event, Mary, 41, admitted that she still has the hunger to compete at the elite level, but she has to bring curtains down on her career because of the age limit.

“I have the hunger still but unfortunately because of the age limit it is over I cannot compete in any competition. I want to play more but I am being forced to quit (due to the age limit). I have to retire. I have achieved everything in my life,” Mary said during an event.

Mary is the first female boxer in boxing history to have captured six world titles. The five-time Asian champion was the first female boxer from India to take home a gold medal at the 2014 Asian Games.

The experienced pugilist won a bronze medal in the London 2012 Olympic Games leaving any record or title untouched from her reach. She introduced herself to the world at the age of 18 in the inaugural world meet in Scranton, Pennsylvania.

With her near-flawless boxing style, she impressed everyone and made it to the final of the 48kg category. She fell short in the final but left a mark of the success that she was going to achieve in the future.

In the coming years, she went on to become the first Indian to win a gold medal at the AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships. She went on to clinch the World Championships titles in 2005, 2006, 2008 and the 2010 editions. After winning the 2008 title, Mary went on a break after giving birth to her twins.

After winning the 2012 Olympic medal, Mary once again went on a break after giving birth to her third child. She marked her return but sealed her place at the summit in the 2018 World Championships which was held in Delhi.

She dominated with a 5-0 win over Ukraine’s Hanna Okhota for her sixth world title. A year later, she went on to clinch her eighth world medal, the most by any male or female boxer.

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