A Weighty Issue

Five-time nationals medallist Jasveer Singh readies for his move up to 91kg.

Having been given an off day, only the most committed boxers show up to train the boxing hall at the Karnail Stadium on Wednesday evening. Amongst the first to arrive is Jasveer Singh. Singh isn't a novice, short of confidence ahead of the Hyderabad Nationals. He has five medals at the nationals including three gold. But Singh won all those medals in the 81kg category. Competing for the first time in the 91kg heavyweight category, Singh is leaving nothing to chance.

While most boxers prefer stepping down a category, with the goal of being the biggest in a lighter weight group, Singh's, choice of moving up is unusual.

In fact at a post workout weight of 85, Singh is a lightweight in the heavyweight category. Singh, however, isn't too worried. "It isn't that much of a problem for me to move up a category. Being lighter than my opponent will mean that I will give away some punching power, but at the same time, I will be faster than them. That is something that has always been a strength for me," the 27-year-old says.

What makes things easier is the fact that other than Asian Games silver medalist Manpreet Singh,. The category is relatively weak. "When you consider it, the nationals have nearly no competition in the light heavy and heavyweight categories. While the choice to move ultimately depends on the coaches because our goal is to win the championship title, I would have been confident of a medal regardless which category I was competing in," says Singh.

Another reason for his lack of reluctance would also be that he hadn't got as many opportunities as he would have liked in the light heavyweight. Originally behind Dinesh Kumar in the scheme of things, the arrival of Sumit Sangwan pushed him still further back. With Vijender Singh also planning a shift into light heavy, the division was clearly getting crowded.

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