The Indian challenge at the World Boxing Championships came to an end with Deepak Bhoria (51kg), Mohammed Hussamuddin (57kg) and Nishant Dev (71kg) settling for bronze medals in Tashkent, Uzbekistan on Friday.
While Bhoria and Nishant went down fighting in the semifinals, Hussamuddin withdrew before his bout due to a knee injury. Nevertheless, they ensured India’s best-ever medal count in the men’s event.
Bhoria, a ninth-place finisher in the 2021 edition, lost 3-4 to fourth-seeded two-time Worlds bronze medallist and reigning European champion Billal Bennama in a neck-and-neck fight.
Bennama exhibited his swift left jabs from a long range, but Deepak closed the gap and landed solid combinations in the final minute of the first round. However, he could not stop the Frenchman from winning it 3-2.
Bhoria made a fine comeback in the second round, winning it 3-2 by connecting some impressive blows.
Bennama relied on his left punches, while Bhoria delivered his sets of left-right blows on target to inflict a count on the Frenchman. Bennama was declared the winner following review of the bout.
Nishant was beaten 2-5 by fourth-seeded Asian champion Aslanbek Shymbergenov of Kazakhstan.
Even as the Kazakh used his accurate combinations, southpaw Nishant showcased his fine left jabs before losing the opening round 2-3.
Shymbergenov’s impressive left-right combinations and clean right crosses got him another 3-2 verdict against Nishant, who displayed his counters including a superb right hook.
In the fiercely-fought third round, Dev showed more aggression to take the duel to bout review but could not advance to the final.
Hussamuddin gave a walkover to his Cuban opponent Saidel Horta due to the injury he received during his quarterfinal bout. The Boxing Federation of India (BFI) said Hussamuddin, who had pain and swelling in his knee, was not fielded in the semifinals in order to prevent the injury from getting aggravated.
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