Indian women pugilists set to leave for England

New Delhi:  Former world champion L Sarita Devi and Arafura Games gold medallist Pinki Jangra along with seven other women pugilists will leave for a multinational training-cum-competition tour of England on Monday.

The training, scheduled to be held from November 14 to 30 in Sheffield, will witness eight countries taking part in the competition. Participation in these competitions is a part of Indian Amateur Boxing Federation`s (IABF) preparation and groundwork for the qualifier event  AIBA World Championships and the 2012 London Olympics.

National Coach Anoop Kumar, who will be accompanying the team, believes the training in England will be a good exposure and a big learning experience for the boxers. "This tournament will provide a perfect platform to train our boxers for the World Championships and the Olympics, moreover it will also help them get use to English environment and measure their own as well as their opponents performance," said Kumar.

"There will be joint trainings and sparring sessions. It will be beneficial to the girls in many ways. Competition would be of a friendly nature, therefore the athletes would not be under any sort of pressure and can train with an open mind," the coach added.

The nine-member Indian squad comprises of boxers in the Olympic weight categories only.Leading the charge for the Indian team would be former world champion L Sarita Devi in the fly weight division. "I have had a long break from international competition. This training would be a good way to get back in rhythm. It will also help us judge ourselves and the level of competition the host country has to offer," expressed Sarita.

Accompanying Sarita would be Arafura Games gold medallist Pinki Jangra. The 21-year-old has been tagged as the giant killer in the domestic circuit and is keenly looking forward to the training stint in Sheffield.