Amit Panghal Reaches Finals of the Strandja Memorial Tournament

Strandja Tournament 2019
Amit Phangal reaches finals of the Stranja Memorial Tournament

Asian Games gold-medallist Amit Panghal (49kg) and former Junior World Champion Nikhat Zareen (51kg) were among the four Indian boxers who made it to the finals of the 70th Strandja Memorial Tournament on Monday in Sofia, Bulgaria.

Amit, the only Indian left in the competition in the men’s draw, defeated Morocco’s Said Mortaji by a margin of 3-2. He is now all set to clash with Kazakhstan’s Temirtas Zhussupov in the finals of the Strandja Memorial Tournament.

Nikhat Zareen also advanced to Strandja Memorial Finals

Kazakhstan’s Zhussupov defeated Argentina’s Jose Leandro Blanc in his semi-final clash. India’s Nikhat Zareen (51 kg), a two-time national medallist, defeated Poland’s Sandra Drabik by a margin of 3-2 in an intense see-saw battle.

The other Indians who made the final stage in the women’s competition were Manju Rani (48kg) and Meena Kumari Devi (54kg).

Manju Rani too gave a power-packed performance

In the 48 kg category Manju Rani got the better of Bulgaria’s Emi-Mari Todorova and in the 54 kg category, Meena Kumari Devi defeated Russia’s Ekaterina Sycheva. Meena Kumari Devi had also won a bronze medal in the previous edition of the Strandja Memorial tournament which marks the beginning of the European boxing calendar.

Lovlina Borgohain settles for bronze

 

However, three Indians Pwilao Basumatari (64kg), Neeraj (60kg) and Lovlina Borgohain (69kg) settled for bronze medals after losing their semifinal bouts. While Basumatari lost to Italy’s Valentina Alberti, Neeraj was beaten by Sweden’s Agnes Alexiusson. Borgohain who is a world championships bronze-medalist and India Open gold-winner was defeated by Chinese Taipei’s Nien-Chin Chen.

India had won 11 medals at the 2018 edition of the tournament of which two of them gold. This was also India’s best ever performance at the prestigious tournament.

High expectations from star boxer Amit Phangal

Asian Games medalist Amit Phangal is expected to bring a gold medal for the country at the Strandja Memorial Tournament. If he manages to win, this would be second successive gold at the competition.

After the Strandja tournament, India will compete in the International Boxing Tournament at Chabahar city of Iran from February 22 to 28.

The team for this tournament features Commonwealth Games silver-medallist Manish Kaushik (60kg) and India Open gold-medallist Sanjeet (91kg).

Close on the heels will be the 38th Gee Bee International Tournament at Helsinki, Finland from March 7 to 10.

 

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