On the 5th August the boxing world witnessed a fight between India’s Vijender Singh, an Olympic medallist and China’s Zulpikar Maimaitiali.
This fight was to unify the WBO Asia Pacific and Oriental Super Middleweight titles, and it was expected to be a closely contested match. The event lived up to all expectations, with boxing fans all across the world enjoying an awesome display of two men putting their hearts and souls into a tough and bloody match.
As one would have expected, there was a huge amount of sports betting activity before and during the match; and according to Unibet, there was very little to choose between the two fighters. In fact, this was borne out by the judges’ scoring. At the end of an epic 10 rounds, it was the 31 year old Vijender Singh who was deemed the winner by one of the closet unanimous decisions ever seen 96-93, 95-94 and 95-94; and in so doing kept his unbeaten run intact. Singh did admit that he never thought the match would go the distance; and although his Chinese opponent did manage to land a few punches below the belt, Singh respected the fighter’s tenacity.
At the end of the fight, the Indian boxer surprised everyone with a genuine heartfelt offer to Zulpikar. The Olympic bronze fighter offered to return the WBO belt he won back to his Chinese rival, as a ‘message of peace’ in an attempt to help resolve a border dispute between India and China.
The dispute between the two countries has been going on for a few months now; and it is all about Himalayan territory. The Chinese have plans to construct a road through the Dokhlam region, which is plateau which joins China, India and Bhutan. The Indian government are opposed to these plans; as they are worried that the road planned would allow access to a 12 mile wide route that links the seven north-eastern states to the Indian mainland; and this would strategically weaken India’s defensive positions.
There have been reports that troops were lining up against each other; and this has brought back memories of the 1962 war, which no one obviously wants to be repeated.
Vijender Singh hoped that his selfless gesture will help bring the two parties together to achieve a peaceful resolution. One hopes that it does act in some way to bring an amicable end to this dispute, and prove that sports do actually help bring nations and people closer together.