The story of LPU’s pride, Manju Rani, is a true inspiration of how your hard work, unruffled determination, and discipline can pave your path to success. 21-year-old Manju, a native of a small village, Rithal in Harayana, holds numerous accolades in her name. At such a young age, she has emerged victoriously in the boxing field and was titled the best Indian performer in the Women’s World Boxing Championship held in Ulan-Ude, Russia. She has already won a silver medal at the Strandja Memorial Boxing Tournament 2019 in Bulgaria and another silver medal at the 2019 AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championship.
BSc Physical Education 3rd-year student of Lovely Professional University, Manju Rani, always had a secret fondness for boxing. Later, inspired by her ideals, Mary Kom and Vijender Singh, she began her boxing journey in 2013 under her first coach Saheb Singh Narwal. She tells us, “I lost my cancer-fighting father in 2010, and from that point onward, it was intense for my mom to earn enough to pay the rent for a group of eight just with my dad’s annuity. I had then the idea that I would surrender my yearnings of boxing although, my mom urged me to proceed. My village coach has supported us all through. He used to train town kids a wide range of sports exercises from the outset we had started with kabaddi. However, I had before long understood that I needed to an individual game and learned self-defense simultaneously. That is how I started my boxing venture,” adds Manju.
Manju Rani, an LPU student, brimming Lovely Professional University with pride, made her international debut in 2019 after winning the national ‘Gold Medal’ at 3rd Elite Women’s National Boxing Championships held in Vijayanagara, Karnataka. And from then there’s no turning back for the boxing girl. Manju recalls that it wasn’t easy for her to follow her passion, “we didn’t have any appropriate grounds for the practice, nor did we have any coaching academy in our village. We used to rehearse in the fields. There were no appropriate kits, we were not wealthy, so whatever sort of pads, boxing gloves, mats we could get hold of, I needed to rehearse with those,” she says. However, she always thanks her first coach, Saheb Singh Narwal, who always supported her and got her admitted into Lovely Professional University.
Admission to LPU was a game-changing point in her life. She reminisces how she got selected for admittance to LPU under the sports quota, after her first trial only. “At that time, my mother was ready to mortgage her jewelry to fund my training and education. However, I am thankful to LPU Management that after watching my boxing skills in the ring, LPU decided to provide me with a 100 percent scholarship, including free accommodation, food, and books. LPU also provided me great chances by grooming me to enter zonal, national competitions, and join coaching camps for international competitions. All this helped me in paving my way to present the international arena,” she recalls. At LPU, coach Amanpreet Kaur trained and sharpened Manju’s boxing skills and shaped a novice in boxing into a young boxing champion.
Talking of the prevailing circumstances, she says the existing lockdown has made it difficult for her to maintain the same daily diet and practice routine at home, which they followed in the camp. However, she is trying to keep up with the same as much as possible. Hoping to see things normalize soon, Manju aims to shine in the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Getting trained with internationally acclaimed ‘Queen-Boxer’ of India, ‘Mary Kom,’ the young boxing champion, Manju aspires to represent India in the 2024 Olympics which is scheduled to be held in France.