Mary Kom: It was my toughest World Championship

M.C. Mary Kom, who claimed a record sixth World Boxing Championship gold, said she was under a lot of pressure in front of the home crowd.

Mary Kom defeated Ukraine's Hanna Okhota in the 48kg category final to win a record sixth World Championships gold.

M.C. Mary Kom spent sleepless nights in the run-up to the Women's World Boxing Championships final. And she said her sixth and latest World championship triumph was the most difficult one because of the pressure of performing in front of home crowd.

Mary cried for several minutes while thanking thousands of supporters in the stands

“It was the most difficult one (World Championship) due to the pressure. From the beginning, I faced all strong opponents,” said Mary at a press conference in New Delhi on Saturday.

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“Today I could not control my emotions as I realised that I am the only one from India to win six gold medals.”

The 35-year-old said her experience was her biggest asset. “I cannot remember (how I won) the previous World titles. Earlier, I used to fight with a lot of energy but now I make things easier for myself by using my experience.

“Even today I train hard. There is not a single day when i don't train. I try to train at least once a day. As long as I train no one will be able to beat me easily.”

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While admitting that switching from 48kg to 51kg to seek a berth in the Olympics would be difficult for her, Mary said she would try her best to make it to the 2020 Tokyo Games.

Foreign coach Raffaele Bergamasco said: “Mary was under tremendous stress because of the home pressure. She could not sleep for two nights even though she was smiling all the time.

“Two months ago, Mary was far ahead of this boxer (Hanna Okhota) but today it was an equal contest...I had advised Mary not to go all out in the first round. Had she done that, the opponent would have finished her because she is young and very strong,” said Bergamasco.