India witnessed a moment of pride at the 12th edition of the IBA Women’s World Boxing Championship as Nikhat Zareen received her gold medal. She is now the fifth Indian in this tournament to win gold after Mary Kom, Sarita Devi, Jenny RL, and Lekha KC. The country celebrates this victory which was possible because of Nikhat’s hard work and determination. However, the 25-year-old boxer has had a fair share of struggles through her journey to gold. As will all look up to her for making India proud on a global level, let’s also get to know who is Nikhat Zareen?
Nikhat Zareen hails from the city of Nizamabad, Telangana. She has been quite a star even in her junior years of boxing. Nikhat Zareen gained the limelight when she won a gold at the AIBA World Boxing Championship, in 2011. Since then the winning trophies have not stopped for Nikhat. She again won a silver at the Youth World Boxing Championship,2014 which took place in Bulgaria. Nikhat has won gold and silver medals in various boxing tournaments in the year 2014, 2015, and 2019 and her latest win was in 2022.
Nikhat Zareen is a fighter on and off the field. In 2019, Nikhat challenged the decision of Mary Kom’s automatic selection to the World Championship. In Nikhat’s opinion a boxer, whether a rookie or legend, should not be selected without trials. Although this plea of hers was rejected, Nikhat did face Mary Kom for the Olympic qualifiers. However, Mary Kom had an easy win by 9-1 and got to play in the Tokyo Olympics. Today Nikhat’s hard work has earned her a place on the winner’s list along with Mary Kom.
Nikhat Zareen’s mother, in an interview, expressed her sheer happiness on the news of her daughter, Nikhat Zareen bringing home gold. She also hoped that her daughter would win gold at the Olympics. Nikhat in an interview with ANI said that this victory was possible because of her parents’ support. The gold medalist also stated that her injury served as a source of strength and that she has spent the last two years working on her weaknesses.