KEY POINTS

  • An Indian Olympian with more or less 100 amateur fights is being compared to Manny Pacquiao

  • The Pacquiao of India didn’t have the same beginnings as the Filipino legend

  • Another politician/boxer in India wants to be like Pacquiao

An Olympic boxer and politician is being regarded as Manny Pacquiao of India.

Mary Kom is an Indian boxer who is also a public servant just like Pacquiao. As far as she can remember, the comparisons of her dual role with “The Fighting Senator” have always made her laugh but at the same time honored.

In boxing, Kom can barely recall how many amateur fights she had but subtly boasted about more or less 100 amateur fights across her name. In a recent interview with Elie Seckbach of EsNews, Kom was asked the hypothetical question: “what would she tell Pacquiao if they ever meet each other face-to-face?”

According to Olympian, she just “love to meet Pacquiao” as she has been a big fan of what the legend has done for boxing and his family. And a simple handshake will definitely mean a lot for her.

“Well, I just want to meet him. And you know, shake (his) hands,” Kom said.

Kom is one of the few notable names in the sport which originally was created for men. But despite the gender and political issues, Kom believes that she has been successful in being an inspiration for the youth.

“I think so, (because of) whatever I have achieved in my boxing career so far. Many youngsters and many people are inspired by me. I’m happy for them,” Kom said about her influence in India as a boxer and politician.

When asked whether she will bring home the gold from 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, Kom was reluctant to display her confidence and admitted that she must first qualify for this year’s Olympics before thinking about the gold.

 “I’m trying to qualify. If qualified then I’m going. I’m trying my best,” Kom responded when asked about the 2020 Olympics.

Unlike Pacquiao, who saw boxing through poverty, Kom’s beginnings were more about real fights and competitions.

 “I keep fighting with my friends whatever the situation is. We were always fighting each other, maybe God has guided me in a good way,” Kom said when asked how she started her boxing career.

Manny Pacquiao WBA welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao looks on during a news conference at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino on January 16, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Pacquiao will defend his title against Adrien Broner on January 19 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. Photo: Getty Images/Ethan Miller

Last April, Olympic bronze-medallist Vijender Singh has said that he will draw inspiration from Pacquiao in both his political endeavors and boxing career.

Vijender, who is India's only male boxer with an Olympic medal and the first to claim a world championship medal was thrilled about the idea of channeling Pacquiao.

"I want to be India's Manny Pacquiao. It would be great if I can be as good as him because I am not giving up boxing. That's my first love, will always be. That's my identity and I am not going to give it up," Vijender said.