Shiva Thapa, Manoj Kumar strike gold at Czech Republic boxing tournament
Indian boxers packed quite a heavy punch at the 48th Grand Prix Usti Nad Labem, clinching five gold, two silver and one bronze medal at the event in the Czech Republic.
World Championships bronze-medallist Shiva Thapa (60kg), former Commonwealth Games gold-medallist Manoj Kumar (69kg), Amit Phangal (52kg), Gaurav Bidhuri (56kg) and Satish Kumar (+91kg) claimed gold medals after winning their respective summit clashes.
Kavinder Bisht (52kg) and Manish Panwar (81kg), on the other hand, settled for silver medals. Earlier, Sumit Sangwan (91kg) had claimed a bronze after going down in the semifinals.
Amit and Kavinder opened the proceedings for the country in an all-Indian final. Of the two, Amit is a light flyweight (49kg) boxer but competed in the flyweight division in this event. He defeated Kavinder 3-2 to claim the top position.
Next up was Gaurav against Poland’s Iwanow Jaroslaw and the Indian had no trouble notching up a 5-0 win.
Shiva, who recently won a silver medal at the Asian Championships, also clinched a dominant 5-0 victory over Slovakia’s Filip Meszaros to record another morale-boosting triumph ahead of next month’s World Championships in Hamburg, Germany.
Another Hamburg-bound boxer, Manoj, too claimed a 5-0 verdict against local favourite David Kotrc. However, Satish Kumar had to stave off a stiff challenge from German Max Keller for his gold.
Manish, on the other hand, lost to Germany’s Ibragim Bazuev to settle for a silver medal.
The tournament marked the end of a fortnight-long training-cum-competition trip for the Indian boxers ahead of the world showpiece scheduled from August 25 to September 2.
Of the boxers competing in this tournament, Amit, Kavinder, Gaurav, Shiva, Manoj, Sumit and Satish will be competing in the World Championships.
The eighth Indian boxer in the fray at Hamburg will be Vikas Krishan (75kg) but he did not accompany the team on this trip, preferring to train in Pune.
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