Despite being a legend in her sport, boxer Mary Kom will not be advancing to the quarterfinals at the 2020 Olympics after suffering a heartbreaking loss in a close match.

A 3:2 split decision saw Colombia’s Ingrit Valencia defeat Mary Kom in the quarterfinals of the women’s 51 kilogramme (flyweight) division. The Indian fighter had competed in two previous Olympics, but this one would be his last.


M. Kom Olympic Games Tokyo 2020

India’s boxing legend MC Mary Kom, 38, was eliminated in the round of 16 of the Olympics after suffering a loss in the women’s 51kg division.

M. Kom Olympic Games Tokyo 2020

Mary Kom, bronze medalist from London 2012, fought valiantly against No. 3 seed Ingrit Valencia of Colombia over the course of three rounds, but ultimately lost by a split decision of 3:2 at the Ryogoku Kokugikan.

Rio 2016 bronze medalist Ingrit came out swinging at the sound of the beginning bell, putting Mary Kom on the defensive. A unanimous decision was reached in favour of Ingrit after Round 1 between the Colombian and the Indian due to the superiority of the Colombian’s clean striking.

The Indian Mary Kom, who has won six world titles, decided to take a more aggressive stance in the second round, and the move paid huge dividends. The 38-year-old Mary Kom won the second round by a split decision of 3:2 thanks to a powerful right jab and left cross.

Both fighters had numerous opportunities to score knockout blows and win over the judges in the deciding round. By drawing on her vast expertise, Mary Kom was able to avoid Ingrit’s third-round charge and deliver several powerful counterpunches.

Ingrid, on the other hand, managed to make a strong enough impression on three judges to eliminate Mary Kom from contention for Tokyo 2020.

After the verdict, the Colombian gave a respectful nod to Mary Kom, the great Indian fighter who was competing in her last Olympic Games.

The misconception stems from a number of different sources. Due to COVID-19 regulations, the referee will no longer raise his or her hand to signal a winner in a boxing match. There is still an announcement of the player’s name and jersey colour. Mary was so caught up in the moment that she completely missed this.


The closeness of the race also contributed to the muddled thinking. The five judges’ ruling was three for Mary and two against her. However, she falsely believed she had won because she had controlled the fight’s final two rounds.

Boxing’s five judges’ scores are made public after each round to (ironically) promote openness. The International Olympic Committee’s Boxing Task Force, which is in charge of organising the sport’s competition at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, made this decision. It’s worth noting that only this year, 2019, Mary was nominated as one of the boxing athlete ambassadors for the Tokyo Olympics, among boxing greats like Ukrainian veteran Vasyl Lamachenko.