Five times world champion in boxing- Mangte Chungneijang Mary Kom - yet most of us know not much about her. Blame it on our 'cricket-crazy' selves or government or partiality by media, unless someone wins an Olympic medal, we are least bothered about other sports personalities of our country! Nevertheless, nothing can act as a deterrent in the way of ‘Magnificent MC Mary Kom’- the queen of rings-who created history by entering the semi-finals of women boxing at London Olympics 2012. Though she lost the semi-finals today, but does the color of the Olympic medal matter? (She lost to Britain's Nicola Adams - 6-11. Breakup: 1-3, 1-2, 2-3, 2-3)
Coming from a modest family of Manipur, her family background speaks volumes about how Mary overcame hardship and inconveniences and created a name for herself in the arena of world boxing. As a child, Mary helped her parents work in the fields, cutting woods, making charcoal and fishing. On the other hand, she spent a good time looking after her two younger sisters and a brother.
Often mistaken for “being Chinese” in her very own country (according to an interview that she gave to BBC), Mary has fought against all odds and is now a role-model for millions of girls in India.
Now it doesn’t really matter which medal she's won, for now she has the RESPECT and ADMIRATION of the whole country behind her!
Here is MC Mary’s life at a glance:
10 Quick Facts about the life of MC Mary Kom
- Date of Birth: 1st March 1983
- Family Background: Born to parents -Mr. Mangte Tonpa Kom and Mrs Mangte Akham Kom who earned their livelihood by working and being engaged in others jhum fields.
- Mary Kom started her career as an athlete but later switched to boxing following the success of another Manipuri boxer Dingko Singh.
- She started her boxing career in 2000 after which there was no stopping her. In 2001, she won a silver medal and in 2002, she started her domination at the AIBA World Championships where she won her first gold.
- She returned with a bang in 2008 winning her 4th successive World Championship. Her feat earned her the title of ‘Magnificent Mary’ from the AIBA.
- In 2010, she had the honour of bearing the Queen’s Baton in the opening ceremony run at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in the stadium.
- She has also been awarded the prestigious Arjuna Award in 2004, Padma Shri Award in 2006 and the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna in 2009 for her achievements in Boxing.
- In 2010, she was voted India’s Sportswoman of the Year.
- Mary married K.Onler Kom of Samulamlan Block on 12thMarch 2005.
- She has twin sons -- Raengpe and Naidong, and interestingly, Mary won the pre-quarter match against on their birthday-5th August!!!
More tid-bits gathered from Olympic Gold Quest
- Role Model : Sushmita Sen
- Employed with : Manipur Police Dept. as a DSP
- Favourite Movie : Life Is Beautiful
- Favourite Movie star : Jim Carrey
- Favourite Song : Ajeeb Daastaan Hai yeh (Lata Mangeskar)
- Favourite sportsperson : Laila Ali (Boxing)
- Favourite Sports to Watch : Boxing and Football
- Favourite Holiday destination : Beijing (China)
- Best sporting moment : Winning the Gold Medal for the first time at the 2nd World Women Boxing Championship in Antalya, Turkey, 2002
- Favourite Cuisine : Chinese