Harpal Singh Bedi
New Delhi: Veteran Mary Kom and seasoned campaigner Sakshi chalked out hard fought wins over their rivals to move into the finals of their respective categories at the ASBC Asian Boxing Championships in Dubai.
In 51 kg semi final bout ,the six-time world champion took time to find her rhythm .However the Indian found her touch in the next round as she landed timely and powerful punches and that put pressure on her Mongolian opponent.
After that Mary Kom kept her cool and used all her experience to take charge of the game and emerged a 4-1 winner.
Having won six medals already in the Asian Championships, including five gold, Mary Kom will face Kazakhstan’s two-time world champion Nazym Kyzaibay who entered the final beating Sri Lanka Nadeeka Pushpakumari with the referee stopping contest (RSC) after the first round.
Later two-time youth world champion Sakshi gave a power-packed performance and upstaged the 2016 world champion Dina Zholaman of Kazakhstan 3-2 in the 54kg last-4 clash and set up a gold medal match with Uzbek boxer Sitora Shogdarova.
However Simranjit Kaur (60kg), Monika (48kg) and Jasmine (57kg) secured bronze after suffering identical 5-0 defeats against Kazakh boxers Rimma Volossenko, Alua Balkibekova and Vladislava Kukhta respectively in their semi-final bouts.
In the men’s quarter-finals Ashish Kumar (75kg) and Narender (+91kg) lost to their Kazakh opponents.
Ashish went down fighting 3-2 against Asian Games Silver medallist Abilkhan Amankul while Narender lost his bout 0-5 to two-time world championships silver medallist Kamshibek Kunkabayev.
Having secured medal in each category in women section, later tonight, Lalbuatsaihi (64kg), Lovlina Borgohain (69kg), Pooja Rani (75kg), Saweety (81kg) and Anupama (+81kg) will play their respective semi-finals.
Five men boxers, including defending champion Amit Panghal (52kg), Shiva Thapa (64kg), Vikas Krishan (69kg), Varinder Singh (60kg) and Sanjeet (91kg) will also be in action in the last-4 stage .
Shiva Thapa, who has secured a record fifth successive medal at the Asian Championships, will take on top-seeded Bakhodur Usmonov of Tajikistan.
Panghal will take on Kazakh Saken Bibossinov, whom he beat in the 2019 World Championships semi-finals while Vikas will fight defending champion Bobo Usmon Baturov of Uzbekistan.
The International Boxing Association, AIBA has allocated USD 4,00,000 prize money for the s event which is jointly hosted by the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) and UAE Boxing Federation.
The gold medallists of men’s and women’s categories will receive USD 10,000 while both the silver and bronze medal winners will take home USD 5,000 and 2,500 respectively.