IMAGE: Amit Panghal defeated Rudyk Maksym to sail into the quarterfinals. Photograph: Ueslei Marcelino/Reuters
Commonwealth Games gold medallist Amit Panghal, national champion Akash and Abhimanyu Loura put up a stellar show to move into the quarterfinals of the 75th Strandja Memorial Tournament in Sofia, Bulgaria on Wednesday.
Amit (51kg) had Rudyk Maksym’s challenge to tackle as he eyed his place in the quarters. The experienced campaigner quickly got into his groove and his ability to efficiently get into the attacking position was on display throughout the bout.
The first two rounds were all about taking on the opponent, while in the third, Amit employed his defensive tactics to frustrate his Ukrainian opponent and capitalise on his errors, advancing with a dominant 5-0 unanimous decision win.
Amit will face Aldarkhishig Battulga of Mongolia on Friday.
Akash (71kg) was up against Traore Makan of France. Akash started slow but soon picked up the pace as he displayed swift movement and landed a flurry of punches, surprising his opponents and gaining a significant lead.
The performance remained the same in second round as Akash continued to be a dominant force in the bout.
Traore did make a comeback in the third round but Akash’s exploits in the first two rounds were enough to give him a 3-1 win. Akash will now take on Mckeever Eugene of Ireland on Friday.
Abhimanyu (80kg) showed a similar display against Monny Raphael of France. The boxer from Haryana made full use of his long reach as he delivered lethal punches for which the opponent had no answer for.
Abhimanyu grabbed the win with a 5-0 verdict and will face the Asian Games gold medallist China’s Tuohetaerbieke Tanglatihan in the quarterfinal on Friday.
The quarterfinals action will start on Thursday with Nikhat Zareen (50kg) up against Lkhadiri Wassila of France, Sakshi (57kg) will face Mamajonova Khumorabonu of Uzbekistan and Arundhati Choudhary (66kg) will square off against Matovic Milena of Serbia.
Jugnoo (86kg) and Sagar (+92kg) will take on Uzbekistan’s Djalolov Samandar and Zokirov Jakhongir respectively. Naveen (92kg) will also have his quarterfinals bout on Thursday depending on his round of 16 match result.