It took seven years for French boxer Estelle Mossely to return to the ring, but the wait was worth it.
The former World and Olympic champion made a fine comeback with an opening round win (60 kg) against Thailand’s Prontip Buapa at the World Women’s Boxing Championships, being held in India. This was her first amateur bout since Rio 2016, and understandably she was relieved.
“The first bout is always hard. You have to be focused. You wait a long time before it. I did everything I wanted to do in this fight,” Estelle told Sportstar, adding that she was also delighted to see M.C. Mary Kom and Nikhat Zareen, the two flag-bearers of Indian women’s boxing.
The 30-year-old now trains her focus on next year’s Paris Olympics. “It has been a long time (since I competed in a World Championship), but I am happy to take part in this competition. It’s a big moment for me because it is the beginning of the preparation for the Olympic Games. It’s a good start. Before the competition, I had said that every fight will be like a final for me. Therefore, I refocus for each fight every time.”
While talking about the French team’s preparations for next year’s Olympics at home, Estelle said, “For me, I have my own team. Sometimes I train with the French team too,” adding that they will have multiple training camps in different countries to acclimatise with various styles of sparring.
“But, for now, we are focusing on the ongoing competition because this is the best possible event to take part in before the Olympic Games. This is the first step, the next being qualification. Between this competition and the next one, there will be a lot of preparation.”
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