#180 bronze for india’s unsung champion boxer

In post #152 Vijender Kumar was cited on BBC page as one who will compete at the Olympic Games ‘against the odds’.

The 22-year-old has returned with a bronze medal.

What an achievement for one true to his calling and vocation in sports in spite a lack of support from sponsors or government — his dedication, persistence and hard work…together with the support of his father.

photo taken from bbc international

…Kumar’s father, Diwan Singh, rode the bus an hour each way every day to bring his son a bucket of milk. To buy milk here in the city, where Kumar lived in a dingy room under the bleachers at Chatrasal Stadium, would have been too expensive. His father kept a buffalo at home, in a village on the outskirts of the city, and the family sacrificed so the son would not go without.

Kumar’s room at the stadium is lined with five wooden cots pressed close together for five burly wrestlers. Trousers hang from hooks on the wall. A pair of mice share the room. On an altar are the medals that each of the five have won along the way, next to images of Hanuman, the Hindu god that wrestlers in India revere.

…The father of Vijender Kumar, the boxer, could give him only his prayers.  (excerpt by Somini Sengupta)

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