Career Timeline


  • From a young age, Raj Kumar Sangwan displayed physical prowess and never missed an opportunity to participate in games and sporting events in his alma mater, The Halwasia School, Bhiwani. It was during his NCC Camp in college when he was first exposed to the sport of Boxing, and upon seeing Kaur Singh receiving his Gold Medal of the Asian Games 1982, Delhi by Amitabh Bachchan he got interested in learning the sport.


  • In 1986 Sports Authority of India (SAI) established a sports hostel in Bhiwani and appointed Capt. Hawa Singh (Arjuna Awardee, twice Asian Games Gold Medalist) (later Dronacharya Awardee) as a boxing coach. Raj Kumar Sangwan joined the hostel and started training. Having a naturally strong built and a desire to learn, he showed remarkable progress and was able to dominate experienced boxers in a short span of time.
  • Capt. Hawa Singh saw great potential in him and left no stone unturned to hone his skills and make him a contender. The encouragement Raj Kumar Sangwan got from him motivated Raj to train harder each day and despite the rigorous training he never failed to impress his mentor.
  • Raj Kumar Sangwan under the guidance of Capt. Hawa Singh, got his first break by winning gold in the inter-college championship in the same year followed by a bronze medal in All India Inter University Boxing Championship.
  • Winning a medal at the national stage encouraged him further and he went on to win Gold in Haryana State Boxing Championship in 1987 and a silver medal in the National Championship the subsequent year. He showed dominating performance in the nationals and got selected in the national team.
  • In 1989, He got selected to represent India on International Stage. He participated in the Cuban International Cup, (one of the most prestigious tournaments in Boxing) and gained valuable experience by competing against noted boxers in the world and winning the bronze medal. The Cup provided immense international exposure which Raj needed.

BOXING CAREER (1990-1995)

  • Raj Kumar Sangwan got a major breakthrough and received international attention in the Boxing World Cup in 1990, Bombay. He was just 21 years of age and had very little experience on the world stage and shocked the world by beating George Onyango of Kenya (Commonwealth Games Gold Medalist and African Champion). Raj displayed a brilliant performance and showcased his might to the world.
  • In the quarter-finals of the tournament, he fought against the legendary boxer Roberto Balado (Olympic Gold Medalist and 3 time World Champion). Though Raj lost the fight, he gave a noteworthy performance which was praised all over.
  • The World Cup provided with Raj the experience and exposure of international level that he needed. He completely dominated the subsequent tournaments and national championships and was now widely accepted as a world-class contender.
  • Raj Kumar Sangwan earned his biggest achievement in the 1991 Asian Championship, Bangkok by winning the Gold Medal. His impeccable performance made him the Asian Champion.
  • For his achievements Raj Kumar Sangwan was conferred with the prestigious ‘BHIM AWARD’ by the govt. of Haryana in 1992.
  • The same year he won the bronze medal in the pre-qualifying event held in Manilla for the upcoming Olympics, Barcelona, and secured a berth in the reserve team for the Olympics. Unfortunately, Raj then suffered a major health problem and lost 20kgs of bodyweight which made him ineligible to compete in the Barcelona Olympics.
  • Dissapointed with the unfortunate event and loss of physical fitness, Raj did not lose hope and worked harder to prove himself.
  • After fully recovering and training harder than ever before he silenced his critics by his performances in National and International tournaments the next year.
  • He won the silver medal in Kings Cup, Bangkok in 1993.
  • The same year he showed his mettle by winning Gold in the China Cup, Beijing and SAF games, Dhaka.
  • Raj Kumar Sangwan continuing his winning streak of the previous year displayed a dominating performance by winning the Gold again in the Asian Championship 1994, in Tehran. He decimated his opponents and became the Asian Champion for the second time.
  • In the Asian Games of 1994 in Hiroshima, Raj Kumar Sangwan won the bronze medal and brought glory to India.

Raj Kumar Sangwan for his performance in 1994 was ranked 4th in the World. He is the first boxer from Indian to get ranked in the top 5 boxers of the world.


Professional Boxing in India is not very well known. In fact most Indians are not even aware that there are two distinct types of Boxing events. There is Amateur Boxing in which fighters represent their respective countries by competing in International tournaments like Olympics, Asian Games, Commonwealth Games etc. In Professional boxing, fights are conducted by corporate organisations to generate money. Every boxer has a promotor who schedules fights and bears the cost of training on contractual basis. There is also a difference in rules of play requiring boxers to learn specific sets of skills and training regimes for example, In amateur Boxing, boxers have to fight for 3 rounds while In Professional Boxing the Championship fights can go upto 12 rounds.

Raj Kumar Sangwan is India’s first Professional Heavyweight Boxer

  • In 1996, Frank Warren of Panix Promotions(promotor of Legendary boxers like Lennox Lewis) approached Raj Kumar Sangwan with an offer to promote him. He signed the contract with them to fight professionally in England. This move made Raj Kumar Sangwan India’s first Professional Heavyweight Boxer. He along with dharmendra yadav and devrajan went to england and started their training. The shift from amateur to professional boxing required them to adopt new skills and learn the nuances of the sport.
  • Raj Kumar Sangwan trained in the famous ‘Peacock Gym’ in London with a team of people specifically designed to cater his needs. The team consisted of nutritionists, streagth and conditionong experts, sparring partners etc.
  • On 9th July 1996 Raj Kumar Sangwan made his debut in Professional Boxing fighting againt Gary Williams in York Hall, London. He dominated his opponent trhoughout the fight and made an impressed everyone with his performance. The people Indian ethnicity came in large numbers to witness this unprecedented event. They cheered and celebrated his victory making his win even more memorable.
  • He continued his training in London for the next few months and was making significant progress until a family tragedy forced him to return back to India. Due to personal/family reasons he could not continue his stay in London. So ultimately he took the decision let go of his Professional Boxing career and use his knowledge and experience to promote the culture of boxing in India.
  • For his outstanding performance in 1996 and bringing glory to India,


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