Lovlina Borgohain's coaches pleased as a punch

A coach who trained Lovlina Borgohain during her early days in boxing and another who has been by her side in recent times are delighted with her medal-winning performance.

India's Lovlina Borgohain (red) celebrates after winning against Chinese Taipei's Nien-Chin Chen after their women's welter (64-69kg) quarterfinal match.   -  AFP

A coach who trained Lovlina Borgohain during her early days in boxing and another who has been by her side in recent times are delighted with her performance which has assured India of a boxing medal at the Tokyo Olympics.

Padum Chandra Boro, who spotted Lovlina in 2012 and picked her for the Sports Authority of India Centre in Guwahati, said he was hopeful of a good show from her. 

“When she joined the SAI centre, she knew nothing. Now she has become a technically sound boxer. I was sure she would do well in the Olympics,” Boro told Sportstar after Lovlina beat Chinese Taipei’s Nien-Chin Chen to storm into the semifinal of the 69kg category, where she will face Turkish world champion Busenaz Surmeneli.

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Boro spotted Lovlina during SAI’s talent hunt initiative at Sarupathar in the Golaghat district of Assam.

“At that time she was doing Muay Thai (a martial art). I put her through some tests and was impressed with her height (5'9''). I thought she could be made a good boxer,” said Boro.

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Sandhya Gurung, who trained Lovlina in the National camp and accompanied her during the stint in Italy prior to the Olympics, said the boxer's game changed after she started fighting fearlessly.

 

“She is a hard-working boxer, listens to advice and does what she is asked to do. It’s a pleasure coaching her. There is a lot of coordination and cooperation between the two of us and it helps. I just enjoy working with her,” Sandhya said.

“Lovlina became a better boxer and performed freely after she got rid of her fear. I used to tell her to be confident in her ability. Now, 75 to 80 per cent of her fear is gone.”

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While training for the Olympics, Lovlina had posted a picture of herself, flaunting her six-pack abs, on social media. Sandhya shared how the boxer worked on her fitness during an adverse period to raise her fitness level.

“In March this year, the National camp in Delhi was stopped due to Covid and everybody went home. But Lovlina stayed back at a hotel in Faridabad and, with the help of a strength-and-conditioning coach provided by OGQ (Olympic Gold Quest), worked on her fitness. It helped her a lot and she emerged as a fitter boxer,” said Sandhya.

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