M C Mary Kom, India's Supermom, made easy meat of her Tunisian rival Rahali Maroua in the quarter-finals to assure India of a bronze medal and go past Beijing's tally of 3, but she is not resting on her laurels and wants to win the more precious medals.
"I am really happy that I have won a medal for my country and I intend to keep up the momentum for a bigger medal,'' said Mary in the mixed zone immediately after the bout. "I am confident for the semis. Winning or losing is part of sport. One boxer will win and the other will lose. But I will give my best,'' she added.
Mary thanked Jesus foremost, then her coaches, administrators and sponsors for believing in her, paying special tribute to her professional coach Charles Atkinson who was in Liverpool.
"Today I really missed my coach Charles Atkinson,'' said Mary. "He didn’t come because of some family problem but he will come for the semis. Before every bout I talk to him. He gives me tactics for each opponent, telling me what I have to do against opponents of different heights and strengths. He constantly tells me how to attack or counter attack.''
Atkinson, however, cannot be in Mary's corner on Tuesday when she starts her semi-final against Nicola Adams because the rules prohibit professional coaches from doing this.
Mary said that the passage to the Olympics had been tough and demanding because she has to compete at a higher weight level. "I used to fight in 46 and 48 kg categories. For the last two years, I have been fighting in the 51 kg. If the 48 kg is introduced in the Olympics then I am confident I will be a champion. But there is no 46 or 48 kg , only the 51 kg category,'' she said.
"I have been world champion five times in the lower weight category,'' explained Mary. "But in this category I have been fighting for only two years. It is not easy to gain weight while training. Reducing weight is slightly easier because if I eat too much then it can lead to problems of digestion and other things."
Mary said that she was constantly in touch with her family, especially her five-year-old twins. "I speak to them everyday. Winning my first bout was my birthday gift for them and this medal is the second,'' she said.