Akhil Kumar enjoys massive popularity in the NIS, Patiala campus. The hall is invariably full when the 33-year-old is inside the ring. While he may have given them little to cheer about over the past few years, the crowd still made plenty of noise when Akhil stepped into the ring to take on Rohit Tokas. At stake was a place in the Indian squad for the Asian Games and this time Akhil would not disappoint.
Akhil, who looked battle fatigued in his previous bout against Vikas Malik on Tuesday, came up with an improved performance against Tokas. The seniormost boxer in the national camp relied more on his experience and tactics than his footwork and agility. One such move saw Akhil taking Rohit to the corner and then launching a flurry of hooks and uppercuts. In each of his three rounds, Akhil used the same tactics and finally got the nod from the judges and booked his place in the Indian team for Asian Games.
While the Asiad will be Akhil’s first tournament in three years (he last participated at the 2011 World Championships in Baku), he did not call it a comeback. “It would have been a comeback if I had left the game but I never did. But yes, it feels good to be once again back in the Indian team for an international tournament,” shared Akhil who has moved up a weight category (from 56kg to 60kg) since his last international outing.
But Akhil had infact suffered a break in his boxing career. In 2012, he suffered a calf injury which forced him to skip the trials for the London Olympics. During that lean period in his life, Akhil completed his training in Haryana Police (he is a DSP) and mentored young boxers like Mandeep Jangra (who incidentally booked his spot in the 69kg category). However, Akhil was never far from the game and took to wrestling at the Police academy by taking help from Olympian Yogeshwar Dutt and Ravinder Sangwan.
- Here’s Why Delhi-NCR Gets Pollution Code On Lines Of Beijing
- PM Modi Is More Interested In TRP Politics Rahul Gandhi At Congress Parliamentary Meet
- Bigg Boss 10 December 1 Review: Priyanka Jagga Succeeds In Her Divide And Rule Strategy
- Kahaani 2 Audience Reaction: Vidya Balan Starrer Thriller Gets Mixed Reviews
- Find Out What PM Modi Said About Demonetisation On LinkedIn
- Row Over West Bengal ”Military Coup” Issue Escalates: Who Said What
- Here’s How Mohammad Kaif Replied To Virender Sehwag’s Birthday Wish On Twitter
- West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee’s Flight Reportedly Had Low Fuel: Here’s What Happened
- Reliance Jio Welcome Offer Extended Till March 31, JioMoney Launched
- Uri Attackers Came From Pakistan, Establishes Digital Data
- Bigg Boss 10 Nov 30 Episode Review: Captaincy Brings Differences In Manoj Punjabi & Manveer Gurjar
- Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi’s Official Twitter Handle Hacked
- After Rahul Gandhi’s Twitter Handle, Congress Official Twitter Account Hacked
- 3 Dead As Army Helicopter Crashes In Sukna In West Bengal
- BJP, Congress Engage In War Of Words Over Nagrota Attack: Find Out More
“I am really thankful to my wife Poonam, Dr Sanjay Vats and Yogeshwar Dutt for helping me get back into the game. They kept motivated me to go on,” said the gold medallist in the 56kg category at the Melbourne Commonwealth Games.
Meanwhile, in Vijender’s absence, it is Vikas Krishan Yadav who will head India’s challenge at the Asian Games after beating Sukhdeep Singh to book the 75 kg spot. Also, Manoj Kumar, who is at loggerheads with the Arjuna Award selection over his non-selection for the award, made it to the Indian team by securing his place in the 64kg. CWG medallist Devendro Singh also made the cut in the 49kg category after beating Amandeep Singh.