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India Open boxing: Sanjeet tames Kenyan to enter semis; Sarjubala Devi advances

India’s Sanjeet thrashed Kenya’s Elly Ajowi Ochola 5-0 to sail into the men’s 91kg semi-final of the India Open International boxing tournament; while Sarjubala Devi, Sumit Sangwan progress

other sports Updated: Jan 29, 2018 23:48 IST
HT Correspondent & Agencies
HT Correspondent & Agencies
New Delhi, HT Correspondent & Agencies
India Open boxing,Sanjeet,Indian boxing
India's Sarjubala Devi in action against Cuba's Rabi Armando Martinez during their bout at India Open International Boxing tournament in New Delhi on Monday.(PTI)

Kenya is the powerhouse in distance running, but when it comes to ring craft, the East African country might be considered a novice. On Tuesday, India’s Sanjeet thrashed Kenya’s Elly Ajowi Ochola 5-0 to sail into the men’s 91kg semi-final of the India Open International boxing tournament at the Thyagraj Stadium.

The Kenyan team, preparing for the Commonwealth Games, was expected to put up a good show, but the contest was a one-sided affair with the Indian cornering the Kenyan twice with a flurry of punches in the first round. The gap between the two boxers was obvious as the match progressed. Ochola’s punches hardly landed on Sanjeet, who was technically far superior.

In the women’s section too, Kenya’s Christine Ongare was no match for India’s versatile boxer Sarjubala Devi in the 51kg. The Indian won 5-0 to advance to the next round.

The situation will be different in the semi-final as Sanjeet will face compatriot Naman Tanwar who defeated Hussein Eishaish of Jordan in another quarter-final match. With Sumit Sangwan also entering the last-four stage --- defeating compatriot Virender Kumar ---, the home team is assured of at least three medals.

In the 60kg preliminary round, India’s Shiva Thapa also advanced into the quarters. He beat Bhutan’s Dorji Wangdi 5-0. Thapa said, “The opening bout was sort of a warm-up. There are good boxers in the fray. The situation will be different in the next round,” he said.

However, it wasn’t easy for Manish Kaushik, who overcame Cuba’s Armmando Martinez Rabi 3-2 in a 60kg quarter-final bout.

India’s world youth champion Sachin Siwach wasn’t lucky in the 49kg category. He lost to Thani Narinram 3-2. “It was a bad day, but I will get another chance to impress the selectors and earn a place in the Commonwealth Games team,” he said.

L Devendro Singh also bowed out losing to compatriot Laldinmawia 4-1 in 52kg.

First Published: Jan 29, 2018 21:55 IST