Shiva makes winning start; Lovlina, Deepak in quarters
Thailand, April 20: Shiva Thapa (60kg) inched one step closer to adding a record-breaking fourth medal from the Asian Boxing Championships by entering the pre-quarterfinals as 2018 World Championships bronze medallist Lovlina Borgohain (69kg) and Makran Cup gold medallist Deepak (49kg) made it to the last-eight of this continental tournament here on Saturday.
Thapa secured a thrilling 4-1 win over Korea’s Kim Wonho and is now a couple of wins away from a medal to add to the gold, bronze and silver that he won in 2013, 2015 and 2017 editions respectively. The Assam pugilist will next take on Kyrgyzstan’s Seitbek Uulu M for a place in the quarter-finals on Sunday.
Lovlina Borgohain, also of Assam, began her medal quest in thunderous fashion by outpunching Vietnam’s Tran Thi Linh 5-0 to advance to the quarter-finals. Up next on Monday for the 2019 Strandja Cup bronze medallist is a stiff challenge in the form of Chinese Taipei’s Chen Nien-Chin, the very girl she lost to in the semi-finals of the World Championships in New Delhi last year.
National champion Deepak continued his good form at this elite event with yet another commanding 5-0 win over Sri Lanka’s Mutunaka Pedi Gedara.
All eyes will be on Asian Games gold medallist Amit Panghal (52kg) as he will begin his challenge on Sunday against Taipei’s Tu Po-Wei.
Amit, likely to face reigning Olympic champion Hasanboy Dusmatov of Uzbekistan in the quarter-finals, has been oozing confidence as he began the 2019 season with a gold medal at the Strandja Cup Boxing Tournament.
Ashish (69 kg) and Brijesh Yadav (81kg) too will be in action on Sunday.
On the women’s side, four-time Asian Championships gold medallist Sarita Devi (60kg) will start her hunt for her sixth medal from this tournament when she enters the ring against Korea’s Gwon Sujin.
Former world junior champion Nikhat Zareen (51kg) too will seek her second international medal of the year after a gold at the Strandja Cup as she takes on Srey Pov Nao of Cambodia.
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