‘ Bahaduri ghar pe rahne mein hain (One needs courage to stay at home),” reads one of Vijender Singh’s Twitter posts, tagged with one of his photos.
A former World and Olympic medal-winning boxer, Vijender, who has remained unbeaten in his 12 fights since he began his professional career in October 2015, last fought against Charles Adamu of Ghana in Dubai in November last year.
With a cloud of uncertainty over his next fight, which was supposed to happen sometime in May, the super middleweight professional boxer is looking at the positives of the forced break due to the coronavirus outbreak.
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A stylish boxer and a youth icon, Vijender — who got into politics by contesting in the last Lok Sabha elections with a Congress ticket from Delhi — understands the importance of having patience and staying indoors in this extraordinary global crisis. He himself follows this golden rule and inspires others to do the same.
Vijender has been enjoying time with his family. Besides, he has been taking to the social media to underline the importance of breaking the social chain in the fight against coronavirus.
Posting inspiring one-liners, sharing his younger child’s video, sharing pictures of his teenage years — Vijender is doing everything to keep himself occupied. He hopes that his fans take cues from this to stay busy in the time of isolation.
Vijender took some time out to speak to Sportstar and share his future plans, his ideas about fighting the deadly virus and the Indian boxers’ preparations for the Olympics.
At this time of crisis, when you cannot step out of home, how are you keeping yourself engaged?
It’s a good opportunity to stay with your family, spend some valuable time with people who are so close to you.
It’s very relaxing to be with family without anything to do. I am enjoying staying at home.
What about your next fight? Has it got affected by the coronavirus threat?
My next fight was scheduled to be held in May (in America). The details were not known. Now there is a lot of uncertainty over it because of the prevailing situation. Even though I am not sure when exactly it will happen, I think it should take place sometime in July. Right now, there is no clarity.
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Since you are restricted to your home, how are you training?
It’s not possible to do full-fledged training. But I am doing my conditioning. I am doing punch-ups, chin-ups and other such exercises which I can do at home to keep myself fit.
When things become normal, I will go back to the gym and increase the intensity of my training in the run-up to my next fight.
At a time when the whole world is facing a pandemic and there seems to be no end to it in the next few weeks, what is your message to your fans and followers?
Stay indoors. Avoid going to public places unless it is absolutely necessary. Just avoid any place where there can be more people. The biggest positive for us in this crisis is that it has given all of us an opportunity to spend time with our families.
In today’s world, people stay busy with their respective jobs and hardly find time to spend with their close ones. We should make the most of it and make the situation lighter with the support of our family members.
We will face a lot of problems if we don’t follow the government orders and stay indoors. We should wash our hands and maintain personal hygiene. There is a lot of rumour going around in various social media platforms. We should avoid those to not let unnecessary fear bog us down. The most important thing is not to get sick and we should behave sensibly to achieve that.
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Do you think the postponement of the Olympics will affect the Indian boxers?
It should not affect our boxers’ preparations. It is good that nine of them have already booked Olympic quota places.
What about the uncertainty? It is likely affect to the morale of the boxers...
They should continue with their usual training. They are already in training and should remain focused on it. They should not bother about other things.