trying to become bowl eligible for a fifth straight season, so

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On the final day of the womens boxing nationals at Haridwar, Poonam Bist pondered her next step. Bist didnt have a bout, having been eliminated in the semifinals of the womens flyweight (51kg) division a day ago. Yet by winning a bronze medal, she had won a place in the national camp.Its a great opportunity for the 21-year-old, who only began boxing a little over a year ago. Her hometown, Haldwani in Uttarakhand, has just one boxing ring and few partners. Bist had competed only in a couple of state tournaments before the nationals - her first ever. The bronze was unexpected. At the national camp, she hopes to get better facilities and the chance to spar with the best in the country. Ive told my mother about it but I havent really decided what I need to pack. Going to Delhi is a very big thing for me, she says.There is a similar mood of anticipation tempered with anxiety in the boxing community in India. After four years of administrative chaos, the newly formed federation has managed to conduct the womens boxing nationals. Not counting 2014, when the short-lived Boxing India conducted a tournament which never had official sanction, the Haridwar tournament was the first womens nationals in over three years.Yes, there were a few glitches. The scoring was dodgy for a few bouts. The scoring machines were non-functional for the majority of the tournament, resulting in the judges scoring by hand. There were more than a few dodgy decisions. Each time officials would ask for understanding. We are holding a tournament after a long time. Just have a little patience, was the stock response. Yet the overwhelming feeling is of relief. That finally perhaps Indian boxing, and at least womens boxing - which went from a bronze medal at the 2012 Olympics to no qualifiers in Rio -- may have finally halted its downward slide.Boxing mar hi gayi thi (boxing had died), says Soniya Chahal, who won gold in the 57 kg division. Our coach would say we had to keep training because one day the federation would start functioning once again, and thats the only reason we kept training. Im just happy we can compete in the nationals once more, she says.Others believe the tournament has done even better than they had hoped. It has been above expectations, says Sagar Mal Dhayal. The Dronacharya award-winning coach had feared that the lack of youth and junior tournaments conducted over the past four years would have caused talent to dry up. Because there were no tournaments being conducted, it was hard to know whether we had any fresh talent coming up. At the national camp, we were seeing the same faces. In Haridwar, I was wondering what kind of talent we would get considering we hadnt held youth and junior national tournaments for the last four years. I thought this sport was finished. But it isnt, he says.Dhayal reckons nearly a quarter of the faces he is seeing at the nationals are boxers he has never seen before. On the day of the final, six of the ten gold medallists were competing in their first national championships.Some states have, however, scripted better survival tales than others. Haryana boxers featured in 8 of the ten finals, with four boxers boxing in their first nationals. Yet the lack of polish was telling in several cases. In the final of the womens 64kg, Jyoti of Haryana suffered a TKO loss in the final round despite twice forcing a standing eight count on her opponent - Simranjeet of Punjab. I should have kept my guard up but I let myself be open. If I had more experience playing big tournaments, I would have kept my cool, said Jyoti, who was also competing in her first senior national championships.Despite the setbacks, Haryana teams coach Jagdish Singh says it was imperative to get new blood into the sport. If we want to target the 2018 Asian and Commonwealth Games and the 2020 Olympics, we cant count on the boxers we have right now. Their careers will not last another four years. The girls who have come up at these nationals are the ones we must groom, says the man who once coached Vijender Singh and Akhil Kumar at Bhiwani.Sarjubala Devi of Manipur, who won the 48kg light flyweight gold - her third national title, says the tournament was important simply to let boxers know where they stand. As a boxer, unless you compete in tournaments, its not possible to know what your level is. You know whether you are performing to your expectations or whether you have to work harder, she says.The womens tournament completed, coach Dhayal says the same must now also be done for the other categories. We have to conduct the mens tournament and also have the youth and junior tournaments as well. The season ends by March, so we need to hold another five tournaments in that time, says Dhayal.That sense of urgency has been appreciated by the federation. We are conducting the mens nationals from December 9th and we will be conducting the youth nationals for both men and women at the end of the month in New Delhi. We plan to host the junior tournaments by February next year, promises Ajai Singh, the president of the BFI. Singh says the federation has taken note of some of the contentious decisions in the Haridwar tournament and is conducting seminars ahead of the mens tournament to help judges come to better grips with the scoring patterns.Meanwhile, the federation will be conducting the national camp for women beginning on December 10. While only the medal-winners are normally considered for selection, this time the net is being cast wider. Apart from the forty medallists at Haridwar, another thirty boxers will also be included. Singh vouches for the quality of the camp, which will also feature 16 coaches - making it the biggest ever organized by any boxing federation in India. They will get the best possible facilities, coaching, scientific practices, masseurs, sports psychologists and nutritionists, he says.During the camp trials will be held to select a team for an international tournament in Russia in January next year. Ajai Singh says it will only be the first of many the federation plans its boxers will participate in. Its very important we dont lose this momentum. We are looking for our boxers to participate in as many tournaments as possible, he says.He promises that the lack of planning which had dogged Indian boxers over the past few years will be no more. Singh claims that a calendar leading up to the 2020 Olympics has been drafted. Singh admits that the federation is racing against time. We have less than a year for the Asian championships and less than a couple of years for the Asian games and commonwealth championships. We have to play catch up after many years. We have to be in a hurry, he says.Dhayal, who also coaches the Railways team puts it more succinctly. We have been stuck at the platform for many years. Now we need to be like a Rajdhani train.Ajai Singh is bullish about the countrys prospects. This isnt rocket science. Theres no reason why we cant get our boxing program going, he says.Bist though, is modest about what the bronze at Haridwar means. For her simply making the national camp is a massive achievement and perhaps the first step to greater success. At the nationals I compared myself to some of the senior boxers and I realized how much my game needs to improve. Im really excited to be taking part in my first national camp. I hope I learn a lot from the senior boxers over there. Perhaps I can turn my bronze into gold the next time we have the nationals, she says. Custom Jonah Williams Jersey . He said Tuesday thats a big reason why he is now the new coach of the Tennessee Titans. Whisenhunt said he hit it off quickly with Ruston Webster when interviewing for the job Friday night. Authentic Custom Bengals Jersey . Cuban testified Thursday that he was upset when the companys CEO told him news that would reduce the value of his shares, for which hed paid $7.5 million. But he said he did nothing improper when he sold those shares over the next two days. http://www.custombengalsjersey.com/ . Jordan Lynch, the all-purpose Heisman Trophy finalist from Northern Illinois, failed to make it into that exclusive club. Custom Bengals Jersey China . PETERSBURG, Fla. Cheap Custom Bengals Jersey .Y. -- Paul Byron and Matt Stajan scored as the Calgary Flames started a five-game road trip with a 2-1 overtime win over the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday afternoon. NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Derek Mason had Vanderbilt baseball coach Tim Corbin talk to his football team about not being afraid of success and how to handle the roller-coaster of emotions during a game.The Commodores showed Saturday night they listened very well.Ralph Webb ran for 123 yards and three touchdowns, and Vanderbilt scored 31 straight points in beating Mississippi 38-17 Saturday night to snap a three-game skid to the Rebels.With the win, Vanderbilt (5-6, 2-5 Southeastern Conference) assured Mason his best record yet in his third season. The Commodores now need a win in their regular season finale to become bowl eligible for the first time since 2013. Their APR is so good that five wins could be enough, winning a sixth game would be even better.Listen thats exactly what were going to do, Mason said. Were going to line ourselves up and try to get ourselves ready to go play one more game because thats what were guaranteed. And you know what? Were looking forward to this one.Kyle Shurmur threw for 273 yards and two touchdowns, and the Commodores also had three sacks. Linebacker Zach Cunningham, the SECs leading tackler, recovered a fumble.Vanderbilt was the first SEC opponent that Mississippi played this season that hadnt been ranked, and the Commodores snapped the Rebels two-game win streak. Now the Rebels (5-6, 2-5) need a win in the Egg Bowl to extend its bowl streak.Freshman Shea Patterson, so thrilling in rallying the Rebels to an upset at Texas A&M last week , struggled against Masons defense. Ole Miss had to settle for a field goal on the opening drive, and Patterson added TD passes to Akeem Judd and Evan Engram.The Rebels were held to a season-low in points, and Jason Pellerin replaced Patterson for the final drive. Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze said they got beat on Shurmurs 67-yard pass to Trent Sherfield -- Vandys longest offensive play this season -- that set up the Commodores first TD.And we never found the rhythm again offensively, Freeze said. I dont know how many drops we had toniight.dddddddddddd. It had to be approaching 10 to 12, and those are critical.The key play came within the opening minute of the third quarter and cost the Rebels their leading tackler, linebacker DeMarquis Gates, for a targeting even though a flag wasnt thrown.The penalty was announced after the replay booth reviewed what appeared to be a fumble by Vanderbilts Donovan Tennyson off a double reverse recovered by Ole Miss defensive back Tony Conner whose foot was out of bounds when he picked up the ball.If was big, Freeze said. Were thin at that spot anyway, and it certainly hurt.Vanderbilt finished off a 90-yard drive with Webbs second TD, an 11-yard run, and a 21-10 lead.THE TAKEAWAYMississippi: Patterson looked so dazzling in his debut at Texas A&M. But Mason defended the likes of Marcus Mariota while coordinator at Stanford, and that game gave Mason plenty to study of Patterson in the Ole Miss offense. At least the Rebels will be at home trying to become bowl eligible for a fifth straight season, something they havent done since 15 straight bowls between 1957 and 1971.Vanderbilt: Ole Miss first TD came off a muffed punt by Darrius Sims in the first quarter, the kind of mistake that has often soured the Commodores fortunes. This time, they shook off the mistake with their most points against an SEC opponent in Masons three seasons.OVERTURNED BY REVIEWVandy got help from another review. A Vandy defender immediately waived incomplete on a Patterson pass to Damoreea Stringfellow on fourth-and-1 at the Vandy 28. Officials spotted the ball, then the replay booth initiated a review that overturned the completion. The Commodores drove 72 yards for the go-ahead TD and never trailed again.UP NEXTMississippi hosts Mississippi State in the Egg Bowl.Vanderbilt hosts in-state rival Tennessee.---More AP college football: www.collegefootball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25. ' ' '

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