Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Lovlina, Sakshi advance to quarters of Women’s World Championships

Tokyo Olympic bronze medallist Lovlina Borgohain made a winning start to her campaign as she and Sakshi Chaudhary moved to the quarterfinals of the Women’s World Championships with dominant victories here on Monday.
Both Sakshi (54kg) and Lovlina (75kg) notched identical 5-0 unanimous decision wins respectively.
While Lovlina out-punched Mexico’s Vanessa Ortiz, Sakshi got the better of Zhazira Urakbayeva of Kazakhstan to progress to the last eight stage.
But the most electrifying Indian performance of the day was displayed by Preeti (54kg). The youngster though eventually lost her bout to last year’s 52kg silver medallist Thailand’s Jitpong Jutamas by a 4-3 verdict, the bout was so close that a review had to be taken.
Preeti entered the tournament on the back of a selection row, where her place in the side was questioned as she didn’t win the National Championships.
However, the 19-year-old justified her place in the Indian team with her fearless performance.
The tenacious Preeti showed aggression against a more experienced opponent to take the first round 4-1.
She fought toe to toe with Jutamas as both pugilists connected punches but the Thai was able to edge the Indian and took the remaining two rounds with the final result being decided by a bout review.
Competing in her new 75kg category, Lovlina, who received a first round bye, won her opening encounter to walk one step closer to a medal.
The two-time World Championship bronze medallist looked a little defensive against her stocky opponent.
The Indian, who was considerably taller than her Mexican opponent, was forced to play from a distance as Ortiz capitalised on every opportunity to move forward and attack.
The result was that Lovlina wasn’t able to connect a lot of the punches as she seemed nervous moving ahead.
Sakshi, the 2021 Asian Championship bronze medallist, utilised her height and long reach to her advantage. She would punch Urakbayeva and step back quickly, not letting her opponent counter-attack.
The Indian danced around the ring, playing with aggression and released a number of punches to emerge victorious.


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