Guwahati: As Shiva Thapa was given a hero's welcome here on his arrival on Friday after winning a gold at the Asian Boxing Championships in Amman, the teen pugilist gave credit to his coach and support staff for his success.
The 19-year-old boxer was received at the Lokopriaya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport here by his friends, family members, members of boxing associations and various social organisations.
Talking to reporters at the airport, Shiva said, "I am feeling good at my achievement. It was a very rewarding win for me. I have been training hard to make sure that I perform to the best of my ability. The Indian team also gave a good performance at the Championship. I do a lot of meditation and concentrate on my training. The hard work has become my habit and my coach and support staff deserve credit for where I'm right now. No one is born with exceptional qualities and only hard work can make that possible."
Shiva said he would be at home with his family for a few days before going to Patiala for training for the World Boxing Championship and Rio Olympics.
Shiva, in the 56kg category, defeated local favourite Obada Alkabeh in the final on a split decision of 2-1 after fighting out a tactically superior bout.
Meanwhile, the All Assam Students Union (AASU), Assam Jatiyatabadi Yuba Chatra Parishad, Gorkha Students' Union and various other civil organisations greeted Shiva with flowers, 'gamosa' (scarfs) and 'japi' (Assamese decorative bamboo hat). Singers and musicians led him to a truck that brought him from the airport to his home in a procession.
His gold medal at the premier continental event on Sunday was his first major achievement after winning medals in the Youth Olympics and World Youth events, besides participating in the London Olympics. Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has congratulated the state boxer for becoming the youngest pugilist from the country to clinch a gold medal in Jordan.