India’s Akash Kumar stormed into the quarter-finals at the 2021 AIBA Men’s Boxing Championships after recording a comprehensive victory against Puerto Rico’s Caleb Tirado.
India’s Akash Kumar stormed into the quarter-finals at the 2021 AIBA Men’s Boxing Championships, after recording a comprehensive victory against Puerto Rico’s Caleb Tirado in Belgrade, Serbia on Sunday. Both the boxers, playing their first match in the competition, started with an aggressive note and traded punches continuously in a highly busy first two rounds of the 54kg Last-16 bout. The 21-year-old Indian had received a walkover in his opening match while Tirado was given a bye in the first round.
The tallest among the two pugilists, Akash made good use of his height and landed some sharp punches to tilt the momentum in his favour. Having taken a comfortable lead after the first two rounds, Akash showed tactical brilliance and started maintaining distance in the final round which denied his opponent any chance to make a comeback into the match. With this dominating 5-0 triumph, Akash is now a win away from confirming a medal for the country at the on-going Championships.
Later tonight, three more Indian pugilists will play their respective pre-quarterfinals bouts. In +92kg category Narender will be up against experienced campaigner and 2006 Asian Games champion Tajikistan’s Jakhon Qurbonov. While current Asian champion Sanjeet (92kg) and debutant Nishant Dev (71kg) will play against Georgia’s Giorgi Tchigladze and Mexico’s Alvarez Verde respectively.
Earlier, in the matches played late on Saturday, seasoned boxer Shiva Thapa made his way into the Last-16 stage with an easy 5-0 victory against John Brown in the 63.5kg round-of-32 contest. The five-time Asian champion put up a dominating show against his opponent from Sierra Leone to continue his winning run at the tournament.
Meanwhile, another Indian in action, Govind Sahani (48kg) ended his campaign in the pre-quarterfinals stage after suffering a 4-0 defeat against Georgia’s Sakhil Alakhverdovi. Sachin Kumar also went down fighting against USA’s Robby Gonzales in the 80kg Last-32 match.
India’s 10 boxers, from the 13-member Indian contingent that took part at the world’s prestigious event, made their way into the pre-quarterfinals stage. Apart from Govind, who made exit on Saturday, challenge is still alive for remaining nine boxers at the tournament, which has been witnessing a strong competition between 650 top boxers from more than 100 participating countries from across the world.
Indian boxer Sumit continued his impressive form and moved into the pre-quarterfinals, after defeating Abdumalik Boltaev of Tajikistan in the 75kg round of 32 match at the 2021 AIBA Men’s Boxing Championships in Belgrade, Serbia on Saturday. Sumit started the bout aggressively right from the first minute and dominated in a highly engaging and busy bout. Boltaev however tried to gauge Sumit’s strategy but the Indian played on the front foot, taking away the first two rounds comfortably from his southpaw opponent.
Trailing unanimously, Boltaev hit the aggressive mode in the third round but couldn’t match the sharp footwork and work rate of Sumit, who kept landing precise punches before securing a unanimous victory. In the Last-16 stage, Sumit will be up against Cuba’s Yoenlis Hernandez on Monday.