Harpal Singh Bedi
New Delhi: Amit Panghal, Ananta Chopde and Sumit made their way into the final while three women pugilists signed off with bronze medals at the Thailand Open International Boxing Tournament in Phuket on Friday.
With Ashish Kumar (81kg), Monika (48kg), Govind Sahani (48kg) and Varinder Singh (60kg) already entering the finals on Wednesday, seven Indians will now fight for gold medals on Saturday with an aim to better the last edition’s record of one gold medal.
Manisha (57kg), Pooja (69kg) and Bhagyabati Kachari (75kg) are the three women pugilists who ended their campaigns after conceding losses in their respective semi-finals.
The 2018 Asian Games champion Panghal started the day’s proceedings aggressively when he outclassed Vietnam’s Tran van Thao in a one-sided 52kg semi-final. Panghal showed a brilliant display of counter attacking boxing and swift movement to register a commanding win by unanimous decision.
Chopde too produced a strong show against another boxer from Vietnam Bui Trong Thai and notched up an easy 5-0 win in the 54kg category.
On the other hand, in the 75kg Last-4 contest, Sumit faced a tough challenge from Kazakhstan’s Ayatulla Takizhanov. But the Indian managed to hold the edge over his opponent before securing a thrilling 4-1 victory.
Later in the day, Pooja and Manisha fought hard but suffered losses by similar margins 1-4 against Thailand’s Baison Manikon and the 2020 Olympic bronze medallist Italy’s Irma Testa respectively while Kachari lost to Hergie Bacyadan of Philippines by 0-5 margin.