L Sarita Devi stuns officials, leaves her Asian Games 2014 boxing bronze at podium

Crying bitterly on the podium, Sarita first refused to wear the medal before handing it over to South Korea's Park.

By: Press Trust of India | Incheon | Updated: October 1, 2014 3:11 pm
India's L. Sarita Devi cries looking at a medal as she steps on to the podium helped by bronze medalist Vietnam's Thi Duyen Luu during the medal ceremony (Source: AP) India’s L. Sarita Devi cries looking at a medal as she steps on to the podium helped by bronze medalist Vietnam’s Thi Duyen Luu during the medal ceremony (Source: AP)

Distraught after losing her controversial semifinal bout, Indian boxer L Sarita Devi stunned officials and spectators by refusing to accept the bronze medal, which is now in the custody of organisers.


The lightweight (60kg) boxer was in disbelief on Tuesday when she lost against home favourite Jina Park, who ended up as the silver-medallist. Sarita was clearly the better of the two pugilists but the judges thought otherwise.

The Indian subsequently also lost an appeal against the judges’ decision and tearfully made her way to the medal ceremony on Wednesday.


Crying bitterly on the podium, Sarita first refused to wear the medal before handing it over to Park after sharing an emotional hug with the home boxer.


The former Asian and world champion then left the ceremony. Park, visibly rattled by the turn of events, left the medal on the podium and made her exit.

Sarita appeared to be a clear winner in the bout on Tuesday, dominating the proceedings with such ferocity that Park barely managed to stand the assault. But much to the shock of the Indian contingent and the spectators, the judges awarded the bout to Park.

A sobbing Sarita later told reporters that she had to do what she did at the medal ceremony to continue with her boxing career or else it would have stayed in her mind.


“It’s not that I did not want to accept the medal. I accepted it and then gave it back to the Koreans. I had to do this to continue with my boxing career or the memory of this incident would have stayed on in my mind. I would now go back and hug my infant child,” she said.

She was ready to accept the consequences of her actions but also accused the Indian officialdom of being uncaring in the whole episode.

“I am prepared for any consequences. Not one Indian official came to us and consoled or even spoke to us,” she said.

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  1. d
    Oct 1, 2014 at 4:24 pm
    1. R
      Ram Rahim
      Oct 2, 2014 at 3:39 am
      She showed the way to keep the ba*****s Judges and Technical Director honest.
      1. H
        Oct 1, 2014 at 3:37 pm
        Indian officials are very well known for their apathy towards anything that requires them to hold ground against unfair treatment to Indian sports persons abroad because they are there merely on a foreign jaunt, enjoying at the cost of Indian public. Go to some Indian missions abroad & see their real behavior how they mistreat fellow Indians!The examples of "couldn't care less atude" of Indian officials are too may to be recounted here - it is a part of the upbringing in the Indian Sub-Continent - unless it directly affects you, one would never stand up for the injustice done to fellow countrymen/women.Also Korea is known for its biased umpiring - have you forgotten the Summer Olympics of 1988, when such instances (of wrong judgement) were galore & so many of the sports persons were deprived of their rightful honor!I wonder why these games are still being awarded to this country!
        1. B
          Oct 1, 2014 at 5:42 pm
          You did right thing if they really made mistake !!!
          1. H
            Oct 1, 2014 at 11:00 am
            She did the absolute RIGHT thing. Now India as a country should stand behind her. Cmon all Chief Ministers ... 1 crore each for this brave lady...
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