Boxers leave for Beijing full of beans

August 2nd, 2008 - 7:23 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 2 (IANS) Beijing-bound boxing medal hope Akhil Kumar asked the people of the country to back the contingent to win medals in the Olympics. Akhil (54), Vijender Singh (75), A L Lakra (57), Jitender (51) and Dinesh Kumar (81) have done exceptionally well in international events in the last couple of years, raising hopes of a podium finish in Beijing.

“We want the entire country to back and pray for us. That will give us the strength to fight. We have the potential to win medals and nothing will go wrong for want of effort on our part,” Akhil told IANS Friday before leaving for Beijing along with his fellow boxers.

The boxers have done exceptionally well in international events in the last few years, and their run-up to the mega event has been phenomenal.

“Last one year has been good for us. We have performed well against world-ranked boxers and that has given us the confidence to do well in Beijing,” Akhil said.

Besides the five boxers, two coaches, and one manager accompanied the team. Boxing Federation of India officials saw them off at the Indira Gandhi International airport.

South African physiotherapist Heath Mathews will be leaving for Beijing Saturday.

“The whole country has faith in our boxers and all our prayers will not go in vain,” said BFI President Abhay Singh Chautala.

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