The Boxing Federation of India (BFI) on Friday unveiled the mascot ‘Veera’ for the upcoming IBA Women’s World Championships 2023, scheduled from March 15 to 26 at the Indira Gandhi Sports Complex in New Delhi.
The announcement was made in the presence of Union Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports Shri Anurag Singh Thakur, BFI President Ajay Singh along with the Indian contingent participating in the prestigious event, as per a press release from BFI.
The mascot Cheetah, which is named Veera, is synonymous to strength, valour, bravery and courage. Just like Cheetah, the world’s fastest animal on land known for their speed, boxers beat their opponents with quick moments in the ring. Veera, the epitome of strength and courage, represents all the women boxers.
“We have to make a habit of hosting [big] international events. As we are organising World Boxing Championships, I would request Ajay ji that we should give opportunities for young boxers from across the country to come here and watch Indian as well as international stars, meet coaches through some program. It will be a big chance for them to get an idea about the preparation that they would need to do in order to reach that level in the future. I also congratulate BFI, Ajay Singh and Team for hosting the Boxing World Championships for the third time and wish the best luck to all the players,” Thakur said.
Accepting the Minister’s suggestion, BFI President Ajay Singh said the BFI will try their best to get the young boxers and coaches from across the country at the tournament, giving them the opportunity to learn from the top stars of the sport.
“Anurag Singh Thakur has taken on the mantle of ensuring India become a power to be reckoned with in the world of sports. Boxing is trying to contribute to that larger objective. We are the third-ranked boxing nation in the world. We are very proud of our women’s boxing team. There will be the highest number of countries and boxers participating in the tournament. We just hope all of you [boxers] do exceedingly well and let’s put on a spectacular show for the entire world to see,” BFI President Singh commented.
Top names from the boxing world, including eight Olympics medallists, will fight for the title at the tournament which India will be hosting for the record third time. The event will also see a massive prize pool of Rs 20 crore.
2020 Tokyo Bronze medallist, Lovlina Borgohain (75kg) has two World Championships bronze medals to her name so far and will join seven other Olympic medallists boxing for glory in the upcoming Championships.
Nikhat Zareen, on the other hand, will defend her title in the 50kg category. She became the world champion in the 2022 IBA Women’s World Boxing Championships held in Istanbul, Turkey.
Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games gold medallist Nitu Ghanghas will also represent the country in the 48kg category. The two-time Youth World Champion will look to add yet another major medal to her name.
Manisha Moun who announced herself on the global stage with impressive performances at the 2018 World Championships in Delhi will be representing the country in the highly competitive 57kg featherweight category. Manisha won the bronze medal at the 2022 World Championships.
2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Jaismine Lamboria has been a quarter-finalist in the 2022 edition and will box in the 60kg category.
Young pugilists Preeti and Sanamacha Chanu will represent India in the 54kg and 70 kg categories respectively. Preeti won a bronze medal at the 2022 Asian Championships whereas Sanamcha is the 2021 Youth World Champion and recently became the National Champion in her category.
The reigning Asian and national champion Saweety Boora will be competing in the 81kg weight category. The experienced campaigner, who won a silver medal in the 2014 World Championships in South Korea will be eager to continue her impressive form to add to her medal tally.
Youth World Champions Sakshi Chaudhary (52kg) and Shashi Chopra (63kg) along with 2019 South Asian Games gold medallist Manju Bamboria (66kg) will be eager to prove their mettle in their respective categories at the World Championships.
In the 81kg+ heavyweight category, India’s medal hopes will be shouldered by the reigning National Champion Nupur Sheoran.
The event will see a total prize pool of Rs 20 crore – Rs 10 crores being the pool for gold medallists. Boxers who finish as runners-up in their categories as well as those who claim bronze will receive their prizes from pools of Rs 5 crores respectively.
The Boxing Federation of India (BFI) will be hosting the Women’s World Boxing Championships for the third time, most ever by any country since the tournament’s inception and a total of 350+ boxers, including the 12 Indians, from 74 countries have registered so far for this biennial event.
Indian Squad- Nitu Ghanghas (48kg), Nikhat Zareen (50kg), Sakshi Chaudhary (52kg), Preeti (54kg), Manisha Moun (57kg), Jaismine Lamboria (60kg), Shashi Chopra (63kg), Manju Bamboria (66kg), Sanamcha Chanu (70kg), Lovlina Borgohain (75kg), Saweety Boora (81kg) and Nupur Sheoran (81+kg). (ANI)