Sanjeet, Nishant one win away from confirming medals at 2021 AIBA Men’s World Boxing Championships

Debutant Nishant struggled in the early part of the game, before turning the tables quite handsomely in the later stage of the match with some continuous sharp and precise body blows.

Nishant Dev celebrates after his 3-2 win over Mexico's Alvarez Verde in the pre-quarterfinal bout at Men's Boxing World Championships in Belgrade, Serbia. (Image Credit: Twitter)

Indian boxers Rohit Mor and Akash Sangwan ended their campaigns at the 2021 AIBA Men’s Boxing Championships after suffering defeats in the pre-quarterfinals stage in Belgrade, Serbia on Monday. Playing in the 67kg category, Akash started the game with aggressive intent against Kevin Brown as both the boxers traded heavy blows. However, the Cuban boxer showed his technical superiority against the Indian, who was making a maiden appearance at the Championships, and secured a win by unanimous decision to set up a quarter-final with Georgian boxer Lasha Guruli.

Meanwhile, in the first match of the day for India, it was heartbreak for another debutant Rohit Mor as his impressive run in the tournament ended in the 57kg pre-quarterfinals after he went down fighting against Kazakhstan’s Serik Temirzhanov by a 1-4 verdict. Earlier during matches played late in the night on Sunday, Sanjeet and Nishant Dev joined Akash Kumar (54kg) and Narender (+92) in the Last-8 stage with come-from behind victories. Having lost the opening round, the boxer from Rohtak, Sanjeet recovered well in time against the Georgian opponent Giorgi Tchigladze not only to win the next round but also the 92kg Last-16 contest 4-1 comfortably in the end.

Similarly, on the other hand, playing in the 71kg pre-quarterfinals bout, debutant Nishant struggled in the early part of the game. However, the reigning national champion from Karnataka, turned the tables quite handsomely in the later stage of the match with some continuous sharp and precise body blows against the Mexican Alvarez Verde to tilt the result of the closely-fought match 3-2 in his favour.

With just a win away from confirming medals for the country, Sanjeet will now take on Italian boxer Aziz Mouhiidine while Nishant will square off against Russia’s Vadim Musaev in their respective quarter-final matches on Tuesday. While Akash, Narender, Sanjeet and Nishant have already progressed into the quarter-finals stage, three more Indian boxers will play their pre-quarterfinals later tonight.

Deepak will have a strong challenge from the Tokyo Olympic bronze medallist Saken Bibossinov of Kazakhstan in the 51kg Last-16 match. Sumit (75kg) will square off against Cuban opponent Yoenlis Hernandez while the five-time Asian Championships medallist will fight against France’s Lounes Hamraoui in the 63.5 kg category. The Boxing Federation of India had fielded a 13-member contingent, with all the current national champions making into the squad, for the world’s one of the biggest boxing events where 650 top boxers have been participating from more than 100 countries from across the world.

Akash Kumar enters quarter-finals at the 2021 AIBA Men’s World Boxing Championships

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.

Sportslumo Desk

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