Madeleine's Indian sojourn

Madeleine's Indian sojourn

Madeleine Angelsen

A foreign face during the national camp for boxers at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium makes for an unusual sight. But Norway's Madeleine Angelsen feels quite at home training amidst the top pugilists of the country.

The 20-year-old bronze medallist from 2016 EUBC European Confederation Women’s Youth Boxing Championships is here on a three-week coaching programme and is impressed with the facilities here.

While the profile of Indian boxers is on a steady upswing, it is common for them to travel overseas for training. In fact, the current group of elite Indian boxers has just returned from training stints in Italy and England before it heads for the Asian Games, beginning in Jakarta-Palembang from August 18.

In a welcome turn of trend it is the Indian federation which got a request from an international federation to allow their boxers to train with home bred talent. With the Women's World Championships, also slated in the Indian capital from November 15-24, it appears that Indian boxing is finally drawing its share of attention.

The Indian boxers, meanwhile, are thrilled to have Madeleine amidst them. Indian boxing's High Performance Director, Santiago Nieva, viewed it as a good opportunity for the Indians to spar with international talent. “The Norwagian national coach approached me with the request to train in India. The BFI (Boxing Federation of India) accepted the request and Madeleine is currently training along with Indian girls. It is a great opportunity for us as a federation and country to open up our facilities. It also means our players get an opportunity to spar with a quality international boxer at home," Nieva said.

Madeleine, who is part of the National Elite team for the upcoming World Championship, believes her experience here will come in handy at the prestigious event. 'It's been really great to be here alongside the women's national team of India. They have taken very good care of me. The programmes and training schedule here are very well thought through and handled and managed very professionally,” said Madeleine, whose instagram is full of pictures of her training sessions here.

“The biggest challenge for me as a boxer is to get partners to spar and train; there are not enough domestic matches. One of the major differences (compared) to Norway is, back home I train alone with one coach but here there are 40 women boxers with varying styles and talents and 14 coaches who look after you; they give inputs on your game and help you to improve.”

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