The media were divided giving their verdict on Vijendar Singh after his loss at the CWG games Delhi 2010. While some thought that the referee had taken a wrong decision, other were cruel enough to proclaim that fame had found home in the star pugilist’s head and that he was naming names and whining just to avoid taking the blame of the loss.
But on Friday, Vijendar ensured that the media and whole of India gave one verdict about his performance – Winner of Gold.
From the word go Vijendar seemed determined to win the title. It looked as if he did not even want to judge the strength and weakness of his opponent first but just charge and finish the anxiety, controversies, allegations, of the past few days with a win. He was playing against those who thought the pugilist had lost his touch, he was playing against those who avoided meeting eye to eye with him just because he won a bronze at CWG. And because his aim was a little different, a little higher from just winning the Asiad Gold, playing against a world champion in the final seemed like a minor obstacle for this determined boy.
Ateov Abbos of Uzbekistan had beaten Vijendar once 7-3 in the semifinals of the World Championships in Milan. But this time Vijendar was taking no chances. He inflicted a 7-0 defeat on his archrival with pack of punches, slick movements and felicity that might have stunned Ateov too.
In the complete bout he remained a step ahead, instantly analyzing what was going through the Uzbek’s mind and instantly charging. Even the last minute attempt to recover made by his opponent looked like practice punches in front of the Indian whose face registered no emotions, just the look of a man with a mission.
After the match said Vijendar, “It is a dream come true for me, winning the Asian Games title. I am satisfied with my performance. Even though my opponent is a world champion, I didn’t feel any pressure. I observed the tactics of my opponent and adapted myself according to the situation. There was this hunger for the title and I enjoyed defeating him, said Vijender soon after the bout.
Looking back, even during the CWG match against Anthony Ogogo of Engalnd Vijendar was doing the same thing. He was adapting himself according to the situation and bringing the opponent’s tactics into his own game. It was this very decision actually that led him to make the fouls that his opponent had been making all along and the referee had forgotten to notice earlier in the bout.
But laying rest to the past pains, doing what he is known to do best, Vijendar Singh returns to India as a resurrected champion. He can dance as many bollywood numbers as he pleases now, do the ramp walks too with ease, because now his fists of fury have already done the talking. Let the pain of defeat rest for a while.