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India aim gold rush at first youth boxing world C'ship at home

Guwahati: Home advantage will be just one of their strengths when India seek to claim their first gold medal since 2011 but an intimidating field stands in the way at the 5th World Women's Youth Boxing Championship starting here on Sunday.

A 10-strong team is pumped up and ready to emulate a certain Sarjubala Devi, the lone Indian to grab a gold at the premier age-group event of the International Boxing Association (AIBA).
Sarjubala Devi, now a regular in the senior camp, had claimed the gold in the 2011 edition in Turkey. The best after that for India was former junior world champion Nikhat Zareen, also a senior camper now, grabbing a silver in 2013.
"In my view, this is one of the most competitive in the youth category. The high number of participants and the athletes boxing quality has grown a lot, as compared to the male competition," India's Italian coach Raffaele Bergamasco said on the eve of the competition. "The opponents to be feared will certainly be China, Russia, Kazakhstan, but also France, England, and Ukraine. I'm optimistic because I think our athletes will do their utmost to reach the highest podium," he added.
India's performance in the last edition of the event was not great, to say the least, with just one bronze to show for.

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