"Forgot how to fight" - Simranjit Kaur buried lockdown stress to bag World Cup gold

Kaur (60kg) trumped local favourite Maya Kleinhans in the final bout to clinch the top podium finish

By Samrat Chakraborty ·

Rising Indian boxer Simranjit Kaur saw off a stressful year, amid the Coronavirus pandemic, with a gold medal at the Cologne Boxing World Cup in Germany last week.

Kaur (60kg) trumped local favourite Maya Kleinhans in the final bout to clinch the top podium finish. The World Championships bronze medallist did so with some quick movements in the ring to outclass the German by split decision.

It was an eventful year for the 25-year-old after the Covid-19 pandemic disrupted the sporting calendar and her normal life. The boxer also mentioned that the lockdown was a difficult situation to be, stating that she almost forgot how to fight.

"The lockdown situation was such that it hit you mentally as well, like nothing is left now, like I was forgetting how to fight," Kaur to the Times of India.

Kaur, however, mentioned that it was good to end the year on the top, with a brilliant performance. "It was good to end the year with a gold medal."

India bagged a total of nine medals from the Boxing World Cup - three gold, two silver and four bronze - to finish second in the medals tally.

The Boxing World Cup also served as an important exposure for the boxers. The marquee event saw top boxers from Germany, Belgium. Croatia. Denmark and France participate.

Simranjit Kaur in action

Simranjit Kaur was part of the Indian boxing contingent of nine men and five women that went on a training stint to Europe from October till the Cologne World Cup as part of preparations for the Tokyo Olympics next year.

She qualified for the Tokyo Olympics after winning a silver in her category at the Asian boxing Olympic qualifiers in Amman in March 2020.

Kaur feels that the long and exhaustive tour has paid off after their Cologne performance. The tour was also necessary in keeping themselves fit after the pandemic had thrown the boxing calendar to the winds, she felt.

"It was quite a long tour, (almost) two months. We got to spar with different partners, including from Italy and France. Then we got a competition in Germany after a long time," she shared her experience.

Kaur, who continues to rise through the ranks, also has a World Championships bronze medal (2018) and an Asian Championships silver (2019) to her name.