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Woman boxer bestowed with Arjuna Award
Published on 29 Aug. 2009 11:18 PM IST
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Laishram Sarita Devi, a seven times gold medallist in various international women’s boxing tourneys has been bestowed with the Arjuna Award, India’s prime honour for sportspersons. Sarita Devi (24) hails from Thoubal in Manipur. Inspired by the feats of Muhmmad Ali, she took up this manly sport in 2000 and literally eclipsed the swiftness of the boys and even pugilists elder to her. This is evident from the fact that in the very subsequent year, she was called to represent India in the fist Asian Women’s Boxing Championship staged in Bangkok. “I am very happy with my achievement. I had been nominated for the award three years ago but I did not get it. I feel it’s a little late now but I am happy to receive this award. It comes as an encouragement for me to perform better in future,” she said. She was encouraged by her family members, which could be a key factor to her success in the ring. When we heard that she is getting Arjuna Award, I was filled with unusual emotion to learn finally the fruit of her labour has paid off. I am really proud of her,” said Thoiba Singh, husband of Sarita Devi. She has numerous achievements to her credit. After winning a silver medal in her maiden appearance in the international arena (Asian Women’s Boxing Championship), Sarita has participated in fifteen more tournaments, winning seven gold, three silver and three bronze medals. She works out for five to six hours a day such as sparring, punching bags and skipping to stay trim and be ever ready for a bout in the ring. She has a desire to participate in the Olympic Games and hopes her dreams will come true. This recent achievement of Sarita Devi is bound to lend a boost to the sporting talents in Manipur, which are abundant in several indoor and outdoor games such as boxing, judo, weightlifting, soccer, hockey and polo among others.

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