Gold rush

New Delhi, April 22

Indian women pugilists put up sensational performances at boxing’s Youth World Championship, winning all seven finals they’d reached at Kielce, Poland, today.

All the women from India in action in the finals today — Gitika (48kg) Naorem Babyrojisana Chanu (51kg), Poonam (57kg), Vinka (60kg), Arundhati Choudhary (69kg), T Sanamacha Chanu (75kg) and Alfiya Pathan (+81kg) — registered victories. This is the best performance by Indian women in the event, bettering the five gold won at the 2017 edition of the tournament in Guwahati.

The Indian women’s team finished No. 1 in the championship, ahead of Russia.


Perfect start

Providing the country the perfect start for the day, Haryana boxer Gitika, who came into the final after beating two-time European champion Italy’s Erika Prisciandaro, defeated local favourite Natalia Kuczewska of Poland 5-0 in the women’s 48kg category to secure India’s first gold medal of the event. Chanu was equally good during her final in the women’s 51kg category. The Asian youth champion from Manipur was in great touch as she secured a gold with a comfortable 5-0 win against European junior champion Russia’s Valeriia Linkova.

In the women’s 57kg final, Poonam started aggressively from the word go and dominated her experienced opponent Sthelyne Grosy of France with precise punches. Poonam, who is also from Haryana, notched up a 5-0 triumph to bag gold, continuing her unbeaten run at the international level.

Haryana girl Vinka (60kg) produced a spectacular show as her punches, packed with a lot of power, were too strong for Kazakhstan boxer Zhuldyz Shayakhmetova and the referee had to stop the contest.

Gitika celebrates the win.

Rajasthan boxer Arundhati added to the gold rush with a fine 5-0 win against Polish boxer Barbara Marcinkowska in the 69kg final. Asian youth champion Sanamacha, who trains at Mary Kom’s academy in Imphal, added the sixth gold when she outperformed Kazakhstan’s Dana Diday 5-0 in the 75kg final. Young boxing sensation Alfiya then clinched the seventh gold for the country by hammering European youth champion Daria Kozorez of Moldova 5-0.

“This has been an amazing effort from our youth boxers, especially when the players had to be confined at home for most part of the last year and only make do with online training sessions,” Boxing Federation of India president Ajay Singh said. — TNS

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