Nitu on top of the worlds

World youth champ then, women’s title now

Published: 26th March 2023 01:31 AM  |   Last Updated: 26th March 2023 01:31 AM   |  A+A-

Nitu Ghanghas celebrates with coaches Pranamica Borah & Bhaskar Bhatt (L)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Dreams do come true for those who persevere. Nitu Ghanghas could not have dreamt a bigger and better dream. In front of Vijender Singh, India boxing legend who has inspired many to take up the gloves and Nitu being one of them, the Haryana girl operated with real intent against Mongolia’s Lutsaikhan Atlansetseg in the 48kg final of the IBA Women’s World Championships here on Saturday. It was not a pretty watch with both the finalists being a southpaw, clearly cancelling each other’s strengths. But Nitu kept grinding, falling on her back five times in the process, showing that heart of a fighter. That was enough to help her get the all-important votes of all the five judges by the ringside.

It was a surreal moment when the referee raised her hand. Nitu, who hails from a tiny village in Dhanana (Bhiwani District), has been cultivating that habit for some time now. In the Commonwealth Games last year, it was the same story. She had not just scraped past her opponents, she had dominated her fights (with opening three bouts in this championship coming by Referee Stops the Contest verdict. But all this has come after off-the-ring struggles not so long ago.

As she stepped out of the ring as a winner, her emotions were visible. Being hoisted by Pranamika Borah (one of the national coaches there by the ringside), she had her one fist raised and she was almost teary-eyed. All her perseverance had paid off. Moreover, that had come in front of her near and dear ones. Her dad being one among them. Her dad has been pivotal in her story so far. Those long leaves, loans are just part of the happy narrative. It’s a well-documented fact that without her dad’s support, this would have been impossible.

Her dad’s sacrifice, her willingness to keep grinding certainly makes this day a sweet one. “I have been boxing for a long time. This is a proud moment. I’m really thankful to the coaches and my family,” Nitu, who was visibly shaking while trying to reflect on her moment, said. In the ring itself, the bout was far from pretty. The 5-0 score might suggest that Nitu had it easy but that was not the case.It was a cagey affair with a lot of clenching involved but Nitu was able to go that extra mile and find that gaps with her right and left combos every now and then.

With the Mongolian behind after two rounds, the onus was on her to put the pressure on the Indian. The Mongolian contingent had not lost hope and ‘Mongolia, Mongolia’ chants could be heard from one section of the stands. Lutsaikhan had nothing to lose and she was the aggressor in the final round and had Nitu near the ropes. Nitu, on her part, was content to show the defensive side of her game. With the crowd in full voice, Nitu huffed and puffed and managed to survive. She had done more than enough to not just emulate Vijender but make a strong case for herself ahead of Paris Olympics.

Saweety success
Saweety Boora (81kg) also raised her game to help India secure second gold of the night. Up against Wang Lina of China, Sweety was the aggressor and was not afraid to trade punches against her taller opponent. Pointing towards the sky, the experienced boxer, who’s also from Haryana, was clearly overjoyed. With two more finals to come on Sunday, India will be hoping to sign off with a bang.

India Matters


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