Look, you defended brilliantly against the States, bu

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Olympics bronze-medallist Vijender Singh is set to take on Kerry Hope for WBO Asia Pacific super middleweight title in New Delhi on Saturday. ESPNs Sidharth Monga caught up with him ahead of the biggest bout of his pro-boxing career so far.Heres the full interview.Why did you choose boxing?Boxing chose me.My grandfather was a boxer. He was a subedar, retired a major. He brought a pair of boxing gloves with him when he retired. I would wear one, and I would pick up anybody and we would fight for the right glove because whoever had the right won. Gradually we realised Hawa Singh (Vijenders grandfathers colleague and an 11-time national heavyweight champion) had started an academy in Bhiwani, which is close to my village. I started under Jagdish Singh.When people in school would find out so and so guy boxes, you just get a different respect. Used to fight a lot in school so the boxers always won. We would also be popular with the girls. I studied in Happy Public School in Bhiwani. Being a boxer you just stood out in the crowd.Slowly it became a passion. We used to bunk school for training. We had to train three times a day: morning, afternoon, evening.When did you feel this could be a career?Not until I became a national (junior) champion in 2002. Then I was offered a constables job, not even a Railways TT (north Indian for TTE, a travelling ticket examiner). I was told if I won a gold in seniors I could get that job. Then I became the national champion in seniors too. Then a lot of offers came my way. Railways TT. At that time Olympics were around the corner, and I heard that I could get an even better job if I went there. After the 2004 Olympics, I was offered a senior TTs job. The pay was good, too. Then I realised there was a career in boxing.I worked as TT for a year and a half. I was the Head TT in Jaipur. I didnt travel on trains, but used to check tickets of passengers who alighted at the Jaipur station.Your coaches say you were an intelligent boxer. Its one thing to have the heart for boxing, but how did you learn the art?I used to read a little bit. Coaches usually ask you to just concentrate on training, and I know boxers dont have that intelligent image. But I believed in reading, whether its a book or newspaper. You always learn from reading. I always had the will to keep learning something new. If only hard work got you medals, donkeys would have been Olympics champions. Bouts are won with your mind. Read. Work hard. Combine them. From the time I entered the senior league, I consciously worked on the mental aspect.One of your earlier coaches, CA Kutappa, says you could figure out your opponents quicker than others, which is crucial in amateur because it is three rounds only. That you dont learn in books.That comes automatically. When you train and focus. When I started, coach Jagdish used to send two-three boxers into the ring. They used to beat me up a lot. I know what a good beating is, and I know how to survive in the ring. I have taken a lot of beating. From behind the coach is hitting you, boxers are hitting you from the front. I have been beaten up a lot. That teaches you.How difficult is it to be a non-cricket sportsman in India?All these things you realise when you hit hard times. That time you realise that as sportsmen even we should have that respect. But cricket has taken itself to a level because it has good administration. If a federation manages boxing the way the BCCI does cricket, of course it will become big. It is one of the biggest sports in the world. You have to organise, you have to meet people, you have to get sponsors, you have to sell ideas to them.Why did it take you so long to turn pro? Amateur boxing anyway is not managed that well in India.Sometimes I think the same thing myself. Better late than never. I should have turned pro soon after 2012 Olympics.Ali, Tyson etc. turned pro just after one Olympics. Didnt you want to go down the same route?I did get two-three offers to turn pro after the 2008 Olympics, but I wanted to play for my country. I went to the world championship in 2009, then the 2010 Commonwealth Games were at home, then 2012 was in sight. So I thought lets do that. I had offers but I thought let me do something for the country first, then I will think about myself.You spoke about 2009 world championships. Thats when you parted ways controversially with Neerav Tomar of IOS, the management company that backed you for the last five years. Why?Kyun kit oh saari ladai hoti hai Haryanvi mein. [In Haryana all fights start with the why]. Where there is a why, there is a fight. What happens in Haryana is a guy asks the other, Arre bhai kahan jaan lag rheya hai? [Hey, where are you going?] The other says, Kyun bataoon tanne? [Why should I tell you?]. And then the first guy says, Wait Ill show you. So dont ask me why.Now you have turned pro with the same management company. How did you guys get back together?Things get sorted out.How difficult was it to come back from the drugs controversy?I used to just sleep. For that one month I slept to my hearts content. For one month I switched off my phone, used to wake up at 10 AM, eat and sleep. Then in the evening if I felt like going to gym, I went; if not, I slept again. My conscience was clear. It wasnt that difficult to come back.What were the changes and challenges of turning pro?Everything. The biggest was to leave my country and go and live and train in Manchester. To be in a new country. Language. Food. No friends. No cushion. Here, you sparred with your friends. There, I didnt know anybody. Technically also I had to change my game completely. New Balance Shoes Australia . U.S. District Judge Lorna G. Schofield in Manhattan agreed that lawyers on both sides could make their formal requests by Nov. 8. A hearing is scheduled for a day earlier. Jordan Siev, a lawyer for Rodriguez, wrote in a joint letter to the judge from lawyers on both sides that MLB lawyers planned to ask that the lawsuit be dismissed. Cheap New Balance Shoes Australia .Y. -- Marcell Dareus and the Buffalo Bills defence made life miserable for Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco. http://www.wholesalenewbalanceaustralia.com/ . Klitschkos management company says the bout will be the Ukrainian fighters 25th world championship fight. The 1.83-meter (6-foot) Leapai defeated the previously unbeaten Denis Boytsov in November to become the WBOs mandatory challenger. Wholesale New Balance Shoes Australia . - After leading the Saints to a fourth playoff appearance in five seasons, Drew Brees expressed confidence in the direction of his team and, perhaps more importantly, showed a willingness to listen to contract proposals if the team needs his help getting under the NFLs salary cap. New Balance Sale Australia . Burke is expected to miss two to three months after breaking a finger in the teams third preseason game. Tinsley, a 10-year veteran, spent the last two seasons in Utah, where the point guard averaged 3.TORONTO -- John Herdman has pleaded patience with his work-in-progress womens soccer team this season. Two more newcomers will have the chance to audition for Canadas head coach when the Canadians play perennial powerhouse Germany in a friendly on Wednesday. Defender Rachel Melhado and forward Melissa Busque earned their first call-ups to the senior side, part of an identification plan that Herdman hopes will make his team younger and better. "I think first and foremost, (Wednesdays game) will be experience for the players," Herdman said on a conference call. "Weve got some new players in the environment, which is fantastic. . . hopefully I can give them some gametime. The main thing is to get some good experience under our belt." Herdman brought 17-year-old Kadeisha Buchanan into the fold this year, and the aggressive defender made a big difference on the back line in Canadas recent 3-0 loss to the United States. Herdman hopes to unearth a few more Buchanans before Canada hosts the 2015 womens World Cup. Busque, a 23-year-old from St. Bruno, Que., is a forward at Seattle University, and Herdman has been impressed with her confidence in camp. "Very rarely do you get this," Herdman said. "People tend to have a quiet few days and keep their heads down but every time shes got the ball, shes been running at people, shes been showing little skills that to be honest I havent seen in players that have come in. Tricks to beat players. Even though she makes a mistake shell get back and have another go at doing the things that were looking for, like (one-on-one) craft and trickery. Shes looked very positive in training." Melhado, a 20-year-old defender from Brampton, Ont., plays at Louisville. "Shes here, and you couldnt tell that its her first tour," Herdman said. "Shes just settled in, shes doing all the hard work off the pitch and on the pitch looks quite established. "Its quite exciting because I think there will be some tough selection decisions around the game, and that gives us an opportunity to get as many players on the pitch as I can." Seventh-ranked Canada has never beaten or tied Germany, a two-time World Cup chammpion and the worlds No.dddddddddddd 2 team behind the United States. "The girls have a big carrot hanging there, that we go out for something, go for that result and see if we can come home with something in our hands that has been pretty coveted I imagine in the last 20 odd years," Herdman said. Herdman said the Germans are well-organized and very disciplined in every facet of the game. "So coming up against a team like this, everyone is digging deep to find ways that Canada can hurt them and not obviously turned over like many teams are against them," Herdman said. The Canadians plan to focus on the attacking end of the field for the game in Paderborn, after a decent defensive effort against the United States. Herdman said his players lost a lot going forward against the Americans, playing conservatively when they needed to go at them. There were too many passes backward or sideways, or players opting to pass instead of carrying the ball. "Weve really focused and emphasized that as a trait of the team and a bit of a mindset shift, so we said Look, you defended brilliantly against the States, but theres no point defending against a team of that quality if youre not going to look to put something in the back of the net, because thats what youre guaranteed with these top teams," Herdman said. Germany averages three goals a game against Canada. "They are going to score. No matter how long you try and hold out, if youre not going to put something in the back of the net youre playing with death," Herdman said. "So the girls are very clear that in these big games against better opposition, people have to do things that are special, and theyve got to be prepared to do those little things that only they can do, like a (Christine) Sinclair, beat a player and put one top corner, a Diana Matheson, beat three players on a dribble, Desiree Scott to not only tackle and win the ball but travel with it and release one of our midfielders. "These just werent evident in the U.S. game, and these are the things that well put right at the forefront of our attention while maintaining a lot of the work that we did against the USA." ' ' '

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