Dinesh Kumar, sporting a different hairdo — a ponytail and streaks, punched his way to the next round by beating Reznicek Vladimir in the 81kg weight category match at the World Championships in Milan on Sunday.
Dinesh defeated the Czech boxer 14-7.
Playing a tactical bout against the experienced Vladimir, Dinesh managed to snatch points with some crisp straights and hooks. Using his right as a weapon and the left as dummy, the Haryana boxer, who failed to cross the first hurdle at the Beijing Olympics last year, managed to control the game right from the start.
“From the beginning of the bout Dinesh was leading the way and kept on stretching the lead as the bout progressed,” said chief national coach Gurbax Singh Sandhu from Milan. “He played with lot of confidence and I am hoping for the best in his pre-quarters bout.”
“It was quite satisfying. But this is just the beginning and there's no time to relax,” an elated Dinesh said. “I have come prepared but competing at the Worlds is completely different,” said the pugilist who is making his debut at the Worlds this time. After Vijender's win on Saturday and Jai Bhagwan's victory earlier, Dinesh is the third boxer to stay alive at the Worlds.
Vijender recollecting his fight against Belgibayev Azamat of Kazakhstan, where he was trailing in the first round by three points, said: “Though I was down by three points in the first, I got aggressive to take the lead. In the second round, I changed my tactic and started attacking.”
Despite trailing 3-6 halfway through the second round, Vijedner did not give up. “I started to counter,” he said. By the end of the second round he was leading 9-8. Third and fourth round went to Vijender, who closed the bout 14-8 in his favour.