New Delhi, Mar 6 (PTI) The Olympic-bound duo of Simranjit Kaur (60kg) and Pooja Rani (75kg) signed off with silver medals at the 35th Boxam International Boxing Tournament in Castellon, Spain on Saturday.
While Simranjit could not take the ring against Rashida Ellis of USA after her semifinal opponent — Kiria Tapia of Puerto Rico — tested positive for COVID-19, which led to her being forced out of the final bout. She, however, has tested negative for the virus.
“Because of local government regulations, she could not compete,” Indian women’s boxing’s high performance director Rafaelle Bergamasco told PTI from Castellon after initial information of an injury trickled in.
Pooja, on the other hand, lost 0-5 to another American Melissa Graham.
The Indian women boxers thus ended their campaign with three silver and one bronze medal. Six-time world champion M C Mary Kom (51kg) had ended with a bronze after a semifinal loss.
Debutant Jasmine (57kg) also ended with a silver after going down to European champion Irma Testa of Italy.
Asian champion Pooja fought hard but did not connect as much as she attempted against the decidedly faster Graham, who dominated with her impressive counter-attacks.
The spirited Jasmine also gave it her all but Testa’s tactical superiority shone through.
The nimble-footed Italian’s eye-catching combination punches and sheer power were just too much to handle for the rookie Indian, whose campaign overall was quite impressive.
Later on Saturday night, Mohammed Hussamuddin (57kg), Manish Kaushik (63kg), Vikas krishan (69kg), Ashish Kumar (75kg), Sumit Sangwan (81kg) and Satish Kumar (+91kg) will compete in the men’s finals.
Of these, Manish, Vikas, Ashish and Satish are bound for Tokyo Olympics.