We fought brilliantly: Sandhu

India’s much-hyped male boxers might have drawn a blank in the London Olympics but national coach Gurbax Singh Sandhu on Thursday insisted that the country’s pugilists gave their “best performance” in the quadrennial sporting spectacle.

“We have fought brilliantly but have been denied a medal. We were unable to translate good performances into a medal but that does not take away the fact that the boys gave an excellent account of themselves,” Sandhu said.

This was the biggest-ever boxing team to qualify from India for the Olympics. They were touted as strong medal contenders but all the seven, including Beijing Olympics bronze-medallist Vijender Singh (75kg), bowed out by the quarterfinal stage in London. It was left to the sole woman representative, MC Mary Kom (51kg), to get a bronze for Indian boxing.

The Indians fell victim to some controversial officiating during the Games, marred by inconsistent scoring and refereeing. On L Devendro Singh (49kg), who lost his quarterfinal bout to Ireland’s Paddy Barnes, Sandhu said, “Devendro fought exceptionally well and his performance was also appreciated by pro-boxing star Amir Khan who was there in the stands. He said to us that our boy was very impressive.”

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