Heavyweight boxer Satish keen to make an impact at Olympics

29-year-old Satish Kumar Yadav feels that age is not a factor which can restrict him from excelling at the top level.

The Arjuna Award has motivated heavyweight boxer Satish Kumar Yadav to set bigger goals. (Representational Image)   -  Getty Images

The Arjuna Award has motivated heavyweight boxer Satish Kumar Yadav to set bigger goals. 29-year-old Yadav, who bagged medals in 2014 Asian Games, 2015 Asian championships and this year's Commonwealth Games, feels that age is not a factor which can restrict him from excelling at the top level.

The Bulandshahr boxer, who claimed his fifth title in the National championships at the Army Sports Institute here, spoke to Sportstar about his preparations and goals in the run-up to the Olympics in 2020.

What are your goals? Do you think you have the age to achieve those?

Age is not a factor. My goal is the Olympics. First, I am focusing on doing well in the Asian championships (next year) so that I can qualify for the World championships. Then I will concentrate on the World championships, which is likely to be a qualifying event for the Olympics.

READ: Unwell BFI president skips AIBA congress; no EC membership for India

Generally Indian boxers don't do so well in heavier weights. Where do you place Indian heavyweight boxers alongside the best in the world?

Indian boxers are also good in heavier weights. We have done well at different international events. I have fought bouts with World and Olympics medallists. The difference is very small. It's not true that Indian boxers are weak in heavier weights. I think I am good enough to win medals in top level events.

Which areas of your game need improvement in order to enable you to get medals in elite competitions?

I have to work a lot harder to be able to beat the top guys in the world. I have to work on strength and core conditioning. Stamina is another area I need to work on. What I am doing now is not good enough. Training needs to be much tougher. I have thought of a plan to achieve my goals - first qualifying for the Olympics and then winning a medal. I have to listen to what the coaches say. Plus, I will do what I feel is good for me. The more competitions we get, the better for us.

What does the Arjuna Award mean to you?

It's a matter of pride. This is the result of the love, affection and support of my friends and well wishers. This has always motivated me to do well. I can't express in words how happy I am after getting the Arjuna award. It means a lot for me. I think I have got the award at the right time. Had I missed out on the award this time, it would have been very difficult to get it.

ALSO READ: Controversial Gafur Rakhimov elected AIBA president

Do you think you got the award at a very crucial time?

The award has increased my responsibility. Now I need to perform even better. At the same time, it is a huge morale booster for me. It has come at the right time – just two years away from the Olympics. It will help me give my best.

Do you have the desire of going the professional way?

Yes, I also want to play professional boxing. If the Boxing Federation of India starts its proposed league, then I will definitely participate in it.

Support Sportstar

Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.