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Indians make disappointing start at boxing World C'ship

India's campaign at the World Boxing C'ship got off to a disappointing start with S Suresh Singh crashing out in the opening round.

other Updated: Oct 24, 2007 17:41 IST

India's campaign at the World Boxing Championships in Chicago got off to a disappointing start with S Suresh Singh crashing out in the opening round of the bantam weight category.

Suresh, a reigning national champion, was beaten 4-9 by Hungarian David Oltvanyi on the opening day of the meet, which is also the first qualifying event for next year's Beijing Olympics.

Making the quarterfinals of the showpiece event would be enough to earn an Olympic qualification.

The Indians, who are also competing in seven other categories, are up against a formidable field in the biggest ever championship, which has over 120 countries and 700 boxers.

One of the best bets for India would be Commonwealth Games silver medallist and Doha Asian Games bronze winner Vijender. But the Arjuna awardee middle weight pugilist has a challenging task at hand as he bids to book a Beijing berth.

The 21-year-old takes on Romanian Ronald Gavril in the opening round today and will have to slug it out in two more rounds to reach the quarters.

The only other Indian who would take to the ring today is A L Lakra (57kg). The Commonwealth champion will be up against Korean Min-Jae Ju.

The five remaining Indians will be in action tomorrow.

In the light fly weight category, Balbir Singh will take on Kazakhstan's Birzham Zhakypov, while Jitender Kumar (51kg) will square off against Moldova's Igori Samoilenco.

In the light weight category, Jai Bhagwan will open his campaign against Bahrain's Valertino Knowles.

The best boxer at this year's National Championship, Dilbag Singh, will take on Lithuania's Roman Skerlo in the welter weight category, while Delhi lad Jasveer Singh will start against China's Xiaoping Zhang in the light heavy weight category.

Earlier, the championship opened with a grand ceremony, which had legendary Olympic champion Muhammad Ali as a surprise guest.

First Published: Oct 24, 2007 17:24 IST