When I was a child I asked my mum why the two people seen on the television set were wearing big gloves and fighting. But as I grew up I realised what an amazing sport boxing actually is and today on the show I had the pleasure of talking to the young and brilliant boxer Vijender Singh.

Many times youngsters struggle to convince their parents that they want to take up a certain sport as a career option rather than getting a proper job. But Vijender said that his parents and family supported him from the start and he did not have to go through the convincing stage. His parents always tried to fulfil his every wish. When he started boxing in 1998-99 all his parents asked him was if he wanted to become a boxer and if he did then he had their support.

He spoke about playing matches initially at the district level and the state level when he lost a lot of them in the 1st or 2nd round because of lack of proper knowledge. That’s when his father supported him the most and said that everything takes time and with time he too would start winning. Everyone faces ups and downs in their career and whenever Vijender feels low he believes in keeping faith in god and being focussed.

He spoke about starting off as an amateur boxer and also his experiences of the first few matches that he played. The feeling of representing your country in a match is exquisite said Vijender. The first time he went to Germany to represent India he remembers that after being selected he realised that he did not even have a passport because till then he actually never felt the need to get one. With a lot of efforts he got his passport and travelled to Germany. He was in the B team, and won the gold medal, that’s where his career took off from and then he never looked back.

Vijender feels creating a boxing league or making a TV show would help to promote boxing. He said boxing is not just fighting. It’s a defensive sport, you have to protect yourself and attack your opponent. And it’s a good career prospect. Unlike what most people feel boxing is safe and people should know more about it to want to take it up as a profession said Vijender.

He has now gone pro and there was a lot of controversy about whether he would be representing India in the future games, but he said that he will always represent India and is doing so now too

 He described his journey from a small village in Haryana to becoming the first Indian boxer to win a medal at the Olympics. Talking about his earlier days he said that life for him wasn’t as easy and he had to do modelling and photo shoots in his training days to pay for his boxing training.

He is a man who I feel has done it all, he has won the bronze medal for India at the Olympics and numerous medals after that, he has done modelling for various brands and he has also acted in a Bollywood movie produced by the famous actor Akshay Kumar. Vijender described his first experience with acting and said that it was very challenging to perform and also to learn all the intricacies of acting. But he enjoyed performing in the film and said that he is open to more acting projects. He believes that anything and everything that is done passionately and by giving your 100 % is always successful.

But when asked what he would do if some day he had to choose between acting in a big Bollywood film and playing a crucial match he said that there is nothing to choose as for him Boxing comes before everything else. He is a boxer first and everything else later.

The passion and commitment that Vijender has for his sport speaks a lot about him. And even though he has now become a star he is very down to earth.

I had a great time talking to him about boxing and also his Bollywood debut.