Tokyo: Six-time world champion MC Mary Kom’s (51kg) pursuit of a second Olympic medal ended in the pre-quarterfinals of the Tokyo Games as she went down to 2016 edition’s bronze-medallist Ingrit Valencia in a fiercely-fought showdown here on Thursday.
The funny part, Mary Kom had actually won two of the three rounds.
“I don’t know what happened, I thought in the first round, we were both trying to figure out our strategies and I won the next two,” said the perplexed legend after the bout.
The Indian trailed 4-1 in the opening round with four of the five judges scoring it 10-9 in favour of Valencia.
In the next two rounds, Mary Kom got three of the five judges to rule in her favour but the overall scoreline was still in favour of Valencia.
The Manipuri clinched the third round too but once again, it was 3-2 and not 4-1 which is what she needed to swing the final score in her favour.
The 38-year-old, who is a multiple-time Asian champion and a bronze-winner from the 2012 London Olympics, lost 2-3 to the Colombian, giving it her all in what would now be her final Olympic bout.
Mary Kom had tears in her eyes and a wide smile on her face when the referee raised Valencia’s hand at the end of the bout, exhausted after the intense clash.
The way Valencia rushed in when the first bell rang, it was quite obvious that the bout would be high voltage and it was exactly how it turned out to be.
The two were attacking each other from word go and Valencia seemed determined to avenge her previous two losses to the icon.