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Sports minister Rijiju to talk to Boxing federation over Nikhat Zareen’s trial demands

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Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju to talk to BFI over Nikhat Zareen's trial demands
Kiren Rijiju (left) and Nikhat Zareen.

New Delhi: Sports minister Kiren Rijiju on Friday said he will speak to the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) over former junior world champion boxer Nikhat Zareen’s demand for a trial bout against MC Mary Kom before India’s squad for next year’s Olympic Qualifiers is decided.

Rijiju took to Twitter to assure the boxer that he will surely convey her demand to the BFI to take the best decision concerning the interest of the nation, sport and athletes.

He tweeted, “I’ll surely convey to Boxing Federation to take the best decision keeping in mind the best interest of the NATION, SPORTS & ATHLETES.”

Rijiju also mentioned that as per the Olympic Charter, a Minister should not be allowed in the selection of players by the sports federations.

“Although, Minister should not be involved in the selection of the players by the Sports Federations which are autonomous as per OLYMPIC CHARTER,” said Rijiju.

Mary Kom (51kg) claimed her eighth world medal at the recently-concluded championships in Russia. She was selected for the event ahead of Zareen, who was refused a trial by the BFI, which decided to go by Mary’s consistent performances while making the choice.

Nikhat demanded a fair chance as the basis of sports is fairplay. She wrote, “All I want is a fair chance. If I’m not given the opporunity to compete what am I training for. Sports is about FairPlay & I dont want to loose faith in my country. Jai Hind.”

The BFI plans to send Mary Kom for the Olympic qualifiers on the back of her bronze-winning show at the world championships, moving away from the previous decision to give direct selection only to the gold and silver winners.

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