Mary Kom: Boxing is not Abhinav Bindra’s business to interfere

Bindra’s message of support to Nikhat Zareen with regards to a plea for a trial bout hasn’t gone down well with Mary Kom.

File Photo: “I don’t talk about shooting, so it is better for [Bindra] to stay quiet on boxing,” says Mary Kom.   -  Ritu Raj Konwar

M. C. Mary Kom on Saturday expressed her disapproval at the support provided by Olympic gold-medallist Abhinav Bindra to Nikhat Zareen with regards to a plea for a trial bout against her for the Olympic Qualifiers.

On Thursday, Bindra had put out a message on Twitter in support of Zareen’s request to Kiren Rijiju, Minister of State for Youth Affairs & Sports, to look into the matter. “While I have all the respect for Mary Kom, fact is, an athlete’s life is an offering of proof. Proof that we can be as good as yesterday. Better than yesterday. Better than tomorrows man/woman. In sport, yesterday NEVER counts,” he wrote.

 

It hasn’t gone down well with six-time world champion Mary Kom.

“Bindra is an Olympic gold medallist but I too have multiple golds at World Championships. This is not his business, to involve in boxing, to interfere. I don’t talk about shooting, so it is better for him to stay quiet on boxing. He doesn’t know the exact rules of boxing,” Mary Kom said.

‘Better to be quiet’

She added, “He doesn’t know anything about boxing. It is better to be quiet. I don’t think Abhinav would also go for trials before every shooting tournament.”

Related | Mary Kom: 'I'm not scared to face Nikhat Zareen'

Both Bindra and Zareen are associated with the JSW group in different capacities.

Mary Kom claimed her eighth World Championships medal — a bronze — recently in Ulan Ude, Russia, and the BFI stated its intention to send her directly to the Olympic Qualifiers in China. The federation was thus changing its stance; it had earlier declared only gold and silver medallists would be selected directly.

For men, though, all medallists in the World Championships — regardless of the category — were to be selected directly.

Zareen had lost to Mary Kom in the semifinal of India Open in May this year.