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Men's World Boxing: Akash, Rohit bow out, Sanjeet, Nishant one win away from confirming medals

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New Delhi, Nov 1 (IANS) 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 bouts in Belgrade, Serbia, on Monday.

Playing in the 67kg category, Akash started the bout 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 clash with Georgian boxer Lasha Guruli.

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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.

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Similarly, 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.

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.

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While Akash, Narender, Sanjeet, and Nishant have already progressed to the quarter-finals stage, three more Indian boxers will play their pre-quarterfinals later on Monday night.

Deepak will face 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 Shiva Thapa will fight against France’s Lounes Hamraoui in the 63.5 kg category.

–IANS

cs/bsk

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