Gitika makes winning start at youth national boxing c’ship

SONIPAT, Jul 18: Reigning world champion Gitika dished out a solid performance to defeat Payal Zala in the opening round of women’s 48kg events at the youth national boxing championship here on Sunday.

The tournament, being held at Delhi Public School, marked a return of domestic boxing action in the country after a gap of more than a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Haryana’s Gitika dominated Zala from Gujarat with some heavy blows right from the start and the referee declared the former as the winner with the RSC (referee stopped contest) verdict in the first round.

Gitika was among the seven Indian women boxers who clinched gold medals and scripted history at the youth world championships in Poland earlier this year.

The ongoing championship is being played with AIBA’s newly-introduced weight divisions — 13 categories in men’s event while 12 in the women’s section.

The opening day witnessed 32 bouts in the women’s categories.

Maharashtra’s Mrunal Jadhav blanked Rajasthan’s Anju 5-0 in the women’s 57kg to make her way into the last eight stage, while Manipur’s Tingmila, who had made the headlines after winning gold in Silesion Boxing Championship in Poland in 2018, also progressed to the women’s 48kg second round with a 3-2 victory against Karnataka’s Lachenbee Thongram.

In the men’s section, 60 bouts were played on the opening day of the event where boxers from states and union territories like Haryana, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, Tamil Nadu, Ladakh took part.

The fourth edition of youth men and women national championship will go on till July 23 while the third edition of junior boys national championship and the fourth edition of junior girls national championship are scheduled from July 26 to 31.

The events will act as the selection tournaments for the 2021 ASBC youth and junior boxing championships, which is slated to take place in Dubai from August 17 to 31.  (PTI)