Wishes poured in for Assam pride Lovlina Borgohain as she made it to the semi-finals in the Tokyo Olympics by defeating Taiwan's Nien-Chin Chen in the quarter-finals and reached the medal round. She has assured the second medal for India after Saikhom Mirabai Chanu who won silver in weightlifting in the 49-kg category.
It is a proud moment for India that the two ladies, both from the Northeast are the first who bagged medals for the country in Tokyo Olympics.
Lovlina Borgohain's father also expressed happiness towards his daughter saying that he hopes his daughter will give her best at the semi-finals and even win gold at the Tokyo Olympics after she assured herself of a medal on Friday. Lovlina, who is making her debut at the Olympics, beat Taiwan's Nien-Chin Chen in the quarter-finals to reach the medal rounds.
"I am very happy. She is now going to achieve her dream, what she has always wanted all her life. I extend my gratitude to the people of Assam for supporting her," said Tiken Borgohain, father of Lovlina Borgohain.
"I couldn't seen her bout today, but I am sure she fought very well. I hope she will give her best in semi-final match also. I am very much hopeful that she will win a gold medal for the country," he said.
Assam Chief Minister Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma also congratulated Lovlina.
"This is a BIG punch. You continue to make us proud #LovlinaBorgohain and keep India's flag high & shining at #TokyoOlympics2020. Well done," said Sarma in a tweet.
Lovlina Borgohain is the second Indian woman and the third Indian overall to win an Olympic medal in boxing. Vijender Singh, who won India's first boxing medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, was among the first to congratulate her on social media.
"Feeling very good after winning the quarter-final, next up is my semi-final. I will definitely try to do better than this in the semi-final. I want to try and win the gold medal for India," Lovlina Borgohain said from Tokyo on Friday after bossing her quarter-final bout.
Lovlina Borgohain will face the 2019 World Champion and top seed Busenaz Surmenellii in the much-anticipated semi-final on August 4.
Major Achievements of Lovlina
Lovlina Borgohain became the first woman from Assam to qualify for the Olympics. In 2020 she bagged the Arjuna Award.
Lovlina Borgohain hails from the Golaghat district of Assam. She has two elder twin sisters, who competed at the National level in kickboxing. Lovlina too started off as a kickboxer. After he switched to boxing, she was spotted by renowned coach Padum Boro, who began training her in 2012.
Lovlina's career's biggest break came when she was selected to participate in the 2018 Commonwealth Games welterweight boxing category. However, her announcement was the subject of controversy after it was found out that she hadn't received any official intimation about her selection. She found out about her selection after the story broke at a major media outlet. At the Commonwealth Games, she lost to Sandy Ryan from the UK in the quarterfinals. Sandy Ryan eventually went on to win gold in that category.
Lovlina's selection in the CWG 2018 was attributed to her success at the inaugural India Open – an international boxing championship held in February 2018 – where she won a gold medal in the welterweight category. She had also won the bronze medal at the Asian Boxing Championships in Vietnam in November 2017 and the bronze medal at the President's Cup held in Astana in June 2017.
She later won a silver medal at the Ulaanbaatar Cup in Mongolia in June 2018 and a bronze medal at the 13th International Silesian Championship in Poland in September 2018.
Last year, the Sports Authority of India (SAI) had sanctioned a Europe tour for elite Indian boxers for a period of 52 days from October to December. But hours before she was about to board the flight to Italy along with the Indian contingent for the training-cum-competition trip, Lovlina tested positive for coronavirus. Lovlina had to miss the flight after contracting the virus, following a visit to her hometown in Assam where she went to see her ailing mother.
Lovlina had said that with time she has become mentally stronger, all thanks to meditation and not to overburden herself, she also tries to keep her mind out of the game when she is not training or working out. Not only has she improved psychologically, she has also improved as a boxer by leaps and bounds.
Lovlina Borgohain, who beat German boxer Nadine Apetz in the 69kg pre-quarters, will now always be remembered as an Olympic medallist. And all three possibilities – bronze, silver, gold – are on the table for the champion Indian boxer.
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