Bhaskar Bhatt is one of the most successful coaches in Indian boxing. Bhatt who is presently the chief coach of Indian women boxers took charge of youth women boxers in 2016 and under his tutelage, India’s women’s boxing which started its journey in 2001, had the taste of greatest success in recent times in 2021. The team achieved seven gold medals out of 10 categories in the Youth World Championship, held in Poland. In its latest addition, under Bhatt’s coaching, the women’s team has also earned laurels in the Asian Elite Boxing championship in Jordan.
The Journey of Bhaskar Bhatt
Bhaskar Bhatt was a national boxer who continued his career for 12 years. He won a bronze medal in the senior national championship, won gold medals twice in Inter-University Championship, and was called up to the senior national preparatory camp a couple of times. Hailing from Pithoragarh in Uttarakhand, Bhaskar and his elder brother Dharmendra Prakash Bhatt had trained under Cap. Hari Singh Thapa, the Asian Games silver medalist in 1958.
Bhaskar Bhatt and the Coaching Job
After he said goodbye to his playing career, Bhaskar completed a coaching degree from the National Institute of Patiala (NIS) in 1988-89 and joined Sports Authority of India (SAI) in 1992. His first posting was at Kurukshetra. He has been transferred to many SAI centers and presently, for the last four years, Bhaskar Bhatt is the chief coach of the National Center of Excellence (NCE) in Rohtak. Commenting on one of his memorable experiences as an SAI coach, Bhaskar said,
“I was in Goa SAI center from 1996 to 2001 when the women’s boxing started in India. The girls in Goa were reluctant to join boxing. Amidst the situation, I convinced and motivated some girls who used to play football at the SAI center. They started learning boxing and gradually made impressive developments as boxers. I still remember those days when I used to do hard work for those girls to make them able boxers.”
On the Scenario of Indian Women’s Boxing
Bhaskar joined the national youth women’s coach in 2016 and finally became the chief coach of the Indian women’s team in 2021. Bhaskar said,
“The scenario of women’s boxing in India was quite depressing around 10 years ago. The girls hesitated to play boxing. Their parents were scared of the injuries in this body-contact game. Even the girls who had the intention to learn boxing had to face a lot of social hazards like condemnation from their family members, neighbors, and relatives. Anyway, the scenario has changed thanks to ‘Magnificent Mary’s glorious rise.”
Simultaneously, Bhaskar had a lot of attributes to the SAI, the central government, and the Boxing Federation of India. He mentioned,
“All these three organizations have huge contributions to the development of women’s boxing as well as boxing coaches. Women’s boxing would not have brought international medals had these organizations not continuously contributed.
Bhaskar Bhatt On Many Kom & Present-Day Boxers
Bhaskar Bhatt is highly optimistic about present-day women boxers. He stated, “There are several girls in Indian boxing who are prospective. Both in the youth and at the senior level the women boxers have been proving their mettle. So, considering the probability of performing at the international level and winning medals, I am highly optimistic.”-- Advertisement --
When asked whether these promising boxers have the possibility to reach Mary’s height Bhaskar said,
“At the moment it is very difficult to predict. Winning a medal in an international competition is obviously achievable. But maintaining consistency for a span of 20 years is something different. Mary has been able to do that. She is a mixture of talent and sheer dedication. Even after giving a cesarean birth child, Mary returned to the ring with the same quality of boxing she used to demonstrate previously. It is next to impossible. Mary has even defied science.” I have doubts whether any prospective present-day female boxer can achieve that feat.”
Bhaskar had also praised a few more female boxers like L. Saritha Devi, Kalpana Chowdhury of Assam, and Pranamika Bora who had glorified the country’s boxing for some time.
The Plans of Bhaskar Bhatt
Bhaskar Bhatt has also plans to introduce a boxing school in his hometown, Pithoragarh after he retires from the job in 2025. But his intention is to find out those talented boxers who are struggling to survive financially.
“Still now, I provide kits and gloves for the talented but financially poor boxers. So, my plans are to spot those talented young boxers who are struggling financially. My parents made a lot of struggle financially to nourish me and my brother and sister. I cannot forget that. So I will also follow their way, contributing to the society through boxing, “finished off the national women’s coach.