Indian youth pugilists took Serbia by storm when they struck 17 medals including seven gold, six silver and four bronze medals for the best haul in recent times in the 36th Golden Glove of Vojvodina on Sunday night.
Of the seven gold, men accounted for four while three went the way of our women even as they shared three silver medals each. As for bronze, the women boxers stepped up themselves to finish with three and their counterparts with a lone bronze.
This proves beyond doubt that Gen Next boxers are ready for the major challenges ahead of them, especially the World Youth Boxing Championships at Hungary in August.
Aman boxed his way to gold in +91kg for a 5-0 verdict against Hungarian Felfoldi Laszlo, Barun Singh got a split verdict of 3-2 to grab the yellow metal against Serbian Joksimovic Laszlo in 49 kg class, Akash Kumar followed suit with a similar result against Argentine Mirco Jehiel Cuello in 56 kg category and Vijaydeep, too, followed the other two Indians in getting a 3-2 decision in 69 kg.Vijaydeep picked the last of the 7 gold that India won in the 69 Kg Category of the Golden Gloves International Tournament in Serbia
Ankit in 60 kg class was way off his rival in the final to finish with the silver, the Scotsman Reese Lynch out boxing him for 4-1 judgment. Nitin narrowly missed gold in 75 kg when his rival from Kazakhstan Assanov Azat won gold after a 3-2 split verdict going in his favour.
Aman was superb on the night and his Hungarian opponent was no match to the Indian. In every round Aman, who was cautious to begin with, opened out and used his combination punches to stagger Felfoldi. By the end of the second round it became more than clear who the winner was going to be.
However, it was not the case with both Barun, Akash and Vijaydeep as their rivals who were equally good. But then all the three Indians did well to keep their opponents at bay in the third round even as they landed a few hooks and punches which saw the judges give verdicts in their favaour.
Earlier, Bhavesh lost in the semi-finals to settle for a bronze medal.
Lalita best boxer
Of the six finalists, Nitu, Divya and Lalita won gold while Jyoti, Manisha and Neha had to satisfy with the silver medals for their best possible results in the women categories—Lalita adjudged as the best boxer (64 kg) and Manisha, the best losing pugilist (64 kg).
It was 2017 Youth World Championship Gold Medalist, Nitu who set the rings on fire first when she took on Billie Denholm of Scotland in 48kg class bout on Sunday afternoon. She was severe on her rival from Scotland, punching her way to a clear verdict of 5-0 from the judges.Lalita (69 kg) was adjudged the best boxer of the Tournament..
Divya Pawar proved a difficult opponent for the local star Dajana Grumusa as the Indian out-punched her way and kept increasing the lead round after round in 54 kg class. So was Lalita who, with a 5-0 decision, forced her Russian rival Angelina Kabakova take a couple of standing counts.
India also bagged three silver medals as India’s lone Youth Olympic Games participant Jyoti, Manisha and Neha lost to their opponents in the finals. Jyoti was a victim of split verdict against 2018 European champion from Italy, Matina la Pianna, and had to settle with the silver as did Manisha, who lost to Russian Maliiuganova. But Neha was unable to match the Kazakh pugilist Dina Islambekova who proved too good on the evening. Yet, Neha need not despair as she was able to finish with the silver medal and, more than that, she has earned some experience in the rings.
Teammates Anamika, Sakshi and Sakshi Umesh, who lost in the semi-finals, got bronze medals for their efforts.
But, overall, the Serbian outing for the Indians proved a goldmine and it augurs well for the future of Indian boxing.