Asian Qualifiers: Amit Panghal qualifies for Olympics, Sakshi Chaudhary misses out

The top-seeded Indian prevailed in a 1-4 split verdict against Paalam. However, Sakshi Chaudhary (57kg) failed to secure an Olympic berth after going down to Korea’s Im Aeji in the quarterfinals.

Amit Panghal has qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics by progressing to the semifinals on Monday.   -  PTI

World silver-medallist and top seed Amit Panghal (52kg) qualified for his maiden Olympic Games after edging out familiar foe Carlo Paalam of Philippines in the quarterfinals of the Asian Qualifiers for boxing here on Monday.

The top-seeded Indian, who is the reigning Asian Games and Asian Championships gold-medallist, prevailed in a 1-4 split verdict against Paalam.

Panghal had earlier beaten him in the semifinals of the 2018 Asian Games and the quarterfinals of the 2019 world championships.

READ: Pooja, Lovlina, Vikas book Olympic berths

World bronze-winner and Commonwealth Games silver-medallist Manish Kaushik, however, lost 2-3 to third seed Chinzorig Baatarsukh of Mongolia after an intense battle but is not out of contention for an Olympic berth just yet.

Kaushik has to win the box-off between losing quarterfinalists as the top six boxers will claim Tokyo tickets in the 63kg category. He will face Australia’s Commonwealth Games champion Harrison Garside in the box-off. The two clashed in the CWG final in 2018 with Garside ending up on the winning side.

However, former junior world champion Sakshi Chaudhary (57kg) failed to secure an Olympic berth after going down to Korea’s Im Aeji in the quarterfinals.

The 19-year-old Chaudhary lost 0-5 to Im, who is also a former world youth champion. Only the semifinalists are entitled to an Olympic berth in the women’s 57kg category of the ongoing event. Her next shot at Tokyo qualification would be the world qualifiers in May, provided she is selected for it.

READ: Qualification done, Vikas Krishan now aims Olympic gold

Im will face Japan’s 19-year-old Irie Sena, who upstaged world champion and top seed Nesthy Petecio of Philippines in a split decision. Petecio was docked a point for holding in the second round which ultimately played a decisive role in her 2-3 loss.

Her next shot at Tokyo qualification would be the world qualifiers in May, provided she is selected for it.

In the last Indian bout of the day, world bronze-medallist Simranjit Kaur (60kg) upstaged second seed Namuun Monkhor of Mongolia 5-0 to secure her first Olympic place.

Simranjjit, also an Asian silver-medallist, will face third seed Shih-Yi Wu of Taiwan in the semifinals after a fine performance against Monkhor. Simranjit’s right hand connected accurately all through.

With this, the number of Indian boxers securing Olympic berths went up to eight after Satish Kumar (+91kg), Pooja Rani (75kg), Vikas Krishan (69kg), Lovlina Borgohain (69kg) and Ashish Kumar (75kg) advanced to the semifinals on Sunday