India Assured of Historic 15 Medals at Asian Boxing Championship
Amit Panghal, Vikas Krishan, and Varinder Singh qualified for the semi-finals of the Asian Boxing Championships.
Wednesday, 26 May, was another successful day for India at the Asian Boxing Championships with three Indians entering the semi-finals to be assured of a podium finish, taking the contingent’s tally to a record-breaking 15 medals.
Among them were two of India’s boxing stars Amit Panghal and Vikas Krishan but grabbing the spotlight also was 60kg-category wrestler Varinder Singh who qualified to the last four in his debut outing.
World Championship silver medallist Amit Panghal lived up to his reputation as he defeated Kharkhuu Enkhmandakh 3-2 in the 52kg quarter-finals while Vikas won his bout 4-1 against Iran’s Moslem Malamir.
Varinder made quick work of his opponent, winning 5-0, to become one of the 15 assured Indian medallists at the event in Dubai.
India’s previous best outing at the Asian Championships had been at the 2019 edition where 13 medals had been won.
Panghal, the world silver medallist and defending champion, made a cautious start, but shifted gears as the match against Kharkhuu Enkhmandakh of Mongolia progressed.
The Mongolian boxer was aggressive from the word go and kept pace with Panghal throughout the nail-biting contest. But it was the Indian’s tactical brilliance that enabled him to edge past his opponent and book a spot in the semis, confirming his third successive Asian Championships medal, following a gold in 2019 and bronze in 2017.
In the last-4 clash, Panghal will take on Kazakh boxer Saken Bibossinov, whom he beat in the 2019 World Championships semi-finals.
In the men's 60kg category, Varinder pulled off a dominating 5-0 win over Samuel Dela Cruz of the Philippines to move into the semi-finals and assure India of the 14th medal at the event.
He will next face Iran’s Daniyal Shahbakhsh for a shot at the gold medal match.
Vikas Krishan was the last of the Indians to record a victory on Day 3 of the Championship, beating Iran's Moselm Maghsoudi Mal Amir 4-1 in the quarterfinal.
While he now assured of a medal, reaching the gold medal match will be his toughest test of the tournament as he next faces top seed and reigning Asian Games and Asian Championships gold medallist Baturov Bobo Usmon of Uzbekistan.
A fighting Ashish Kumar Chaudhary (75kg) though went down 2-3 to Kazakhstan's Abilkhan Amankul, the World Championships and Asian Games silver medallist. Super heavyweight boxer Narender Berwal too lost his plus 91 kg quarter-final match to Kazakhstan's Kamshikek Kunkabayev 0-5.
Thursday will see the Indian women’s boxing contingent get on the mat with MC Mary Kom leading the way. The six-time world champion will be fighting in the 51kg semi-finals.
The women’s team in fact has qualified for the semi-finals in each of the 10 categories and assured themselves of a medal.
Thursday’s Schedule for Asian C’ship Bouts
- Monika (48 kg)- 7:45 PM IST
- Mary Kom (51kg)- 8 PM
- Sakshi (54kg)- 8:30 PM
- Jaismine (57kg)- 9PM
- Simranjit (60kg)- 9:45 PM
- Lalbuatsaihi (64kg)- 10:15
- Lovlina (69kg)- 10:30 PM
- Pooja Rani (75 kg)- 11 PM
- Saweety (81kg)- 11:15 PM
- Anupama (+81kg)- 11:30 PM
(The Quint is available on Telegram. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram)
Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.