Indian boxers Amit Panghal and Pooja Rani made the country proud again by winning gold medals, while Deepak Singh, Kavinder Singh Bisht and Simranjit Kaur settled for silver in the finals of Asian Boxing Championship in Bangkok, Thailand. It was the second successive gold medal of the year for Panghal and third medal for Rani in the prestigious tournament.
Asian Games gold medallist Panghal who earlier this year moved up from 49kg to 52kg was competing in his sole international competition. Panghal defeated his Korean counterpart Kim Inkyu in an unanimous decision to clinch gold in the tournament. It was his second successive gold medal victory after winning a gold in the Strandja Memorial tournament held in February, earlier this year.
Panghal was in his aggressive best throughout the bout and his opponent appeared sluggish in front of him. Panghal was on an all-out attack mood punching his opponent relentlessly and cornering him quite often in the match and his opponent Inkyu had no answer for this assault of Panghal.
“It all went as I planned. I am very happy. As for my bouts, I am satisfied with how I performed,” Panghal, told PTI.
National champion Deepak Singh was fighting Nodirjon Mirzahmedov of Uzbekistan, but, despite showing a lion-hearted performance the decision of the judges went against Singh and he had to settle with silver after the loss in the 49kg category finals.
The Indian was the clear winner of the first round with his straight punches but the rival came back strong in the second round with his right hook punches. The final decision didn’t went down good in the Indian camp who sought a review of the decision instantly.
Kavinder Singh Bisht was fighting his final bout with a bandage over his right eye as he had sustained injury from the semi-final match. Bisht was all aggressive in his approach in the match that resulted in Bisht getting hit again on his wound in the third round. This made Bisht a little defensive and his rival Mirazizbek Mirzahalilov of Uzbekistan eventually won the match in 56kg weight category and knocked out Bisht from the championship.
Simranjit Kaur went down fighting the reigning World Champion Dou Dan in the finals of 64kg weight category. Kaur has previously lost to the same opponent in the World Championship semi-finals last year. Kaur had to settle with a silver in the Asian championship.
Ashish Kumar also had to settle with a silver medal in the Asian tournament after he lost his maiden finals matchup in the 75kg weight category and bowed out of the tournament.
A scintillating performance from the contingent as they finish their #AsianBoxingChampionship campaign with a splendid tally of 1 medals.
In the last match of the day, Pooja Rani defeated her opponent the reigning World Champion Wang Lina of China in the finals of the 81kg category and claimed the top honour in the tournament. Pooja has previously won silver in 2012 and a bronze in 2015 at the earlier editions of the tournament.
All because of the hard-fought gold medal wins in the Asian Boxing Championship, Rani and Panghal are now assured of a World Championships berth later this year.
Indian boxers presented their best ever show in the Asian Boxing Championship, with 13 medals in total – two gold, four silver and seven bronze. The previous best in this tournament was in 2009, when the Indian side won a gold, two silver and four bronze.
(Featured Image: FB/Boxing Federation of India)
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