Indian boxing squad for 2022 Asian Games named; Amit Panghal, Nitu Ghanghas miss out
Reigning world champion Nitu Ghanghas and veteran Amit Panghal miss the bus as BFI names 13-member Indian boxing contingent for 2022 Asian Games.
World Championship bronze medallist boxers Deepak Bhoria (51kg) and Nishant Dev (71kg) were named in the Indian men's boxing team for upcoming 2023 Asian Games in Hangzhou, on Saturday.
The Asian Games boxing competitions assume greater significance this year as will serve as the first Olympic Qualifiers for the 2024 Paris Games for the pugilists from the continent.
Reigning Asian Games champion Amit Panghal will, however, won't be seen defending his title with the young Deepak Bhoria getting the nod instead in the men's 51kg section.
The former world and Asian champion had lost out to Deepak for a spot in the 2023 World Championships as well under the Boxing Federation of India's (BFI) new selection policy that evaluates a boxer on various parameters over two-three weeks.
On the other hand, the duo of Deepak and Nishant had impressed at the World Championships in May, losing closely-fought semifinal bouts to return home with bronze medals.
In the women's section, the 2022 Worlds bronze medallist Parveen Hooda (57kg),, Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Jaismine Lamboria (60kg), Arundhati Chaudhary and Preeti Pawar joined star boxers Nikhat Zareen (51kg) and Lovlina Borgohain (75kg) in the women's team for the continental event to be held from September 23 to October 8.
Nikhat and Tokyo Olympics bronze medallist Lovlina had automatically qualified for the Asian Games by reaching the final of the World Championships held in Delhi earlier this year.
Reigning world champion in women's 48kg Nitu Ghanghas, on the other hand, will not be in action the Hangzhou Games. Having bulked up to the 54kg section in a bid to qualify for the Asian Games, Ghanghas lost out to the young Priti Pawar in assessments.
The 19-year-old Haryana-based Preeti had put up a fearless display in her debut World Championships earlier in the year, which included toppling the top seed and last edition's silver medallist.
Among men, the experienced Shiva Thapa will represent the country in the super lightweight category (63.5kg).
On the other hand, 2021 World Youth champion Sachin Siwach has moved up from 54kg to 57kg in the absence of Worlds bronze medallist Mohammad Hussamuddin, who is recovering from a knee injury suffered during the quarterfinal of the World Championships in May.
Former Asian champion Sanjeet (92kg), Lakshya Chahar (80 kg), and Nerender Berwal, who finished ahead of Commonwealth Games silver medallist Sagar Ahlawat, also cut the marquee event.
Indian Boxing Contingent for Asian Games:
Women: Nikhat Zareen (51kg), Preeti Pawar (54kg), Parveen Hooda (57kg), Jaismine Lamboria 60kg, Arundhati Chaudhary (66kg), Lovlina Borgohain (75kg).
Men: Deepak Bhoria (51kg), Sachin Siwach (57kg), Shiva Thapa (63.5kg), Nishant Dev (71kg), Lakshya Chahar (80kg), Sanjeet (92kg), Narender Berwal (+92kg)