Lovlina gets walkover as Haryana, Kerala pugilists impress

Divya Ganesh (69 kg), Indira K. A. (75kg), Anaswara P. M. (81+kg) and Fousiya A. T. (81kg) entered the quarterfinals along with four boxers from Haryana.

Lovlina Borgohain got a walkover to the last-eight of the National Boxing Championships.   -  AFP

Lovlina Borgohain, who won a bronze at the World Championships in November, entered the quarterfinals owing to a walkover as pugilists from Haryana and Kerala impressed in the Women's National Boxing Championships here Thursday.

Though the most interesting aspect of the Nationals was four of Kerala boxers — Divya Ganesh (69 kg), Indira K. A. (75kg), Anaswara P. M. (81+kg) and Fousiya A. T. (81kg) — entered the quarterfinals along with four boxers from Haryana while three pugilists from Railways, two each from Delhi, Punjab, Chandigarh and All India Police and one from Rajasthan, made it a worthwhile event for themselves.

Fousiya got a walkover from AIP’s Neha Jhadav, Divya beat Tamil Nadu’s S. Preethi 5:0, Indira achieved an RSC-1 decision against Gujarat’s Riya Upadhyay and Anaswara won on points (5:0) against Maharashtra’s Shayaan Pathan to move up for Kerala.

As Haryana’s quarterfinal entrants — 2017 World Youth Championship bronze-medallist Anupama was the lone boxer who benefited from a walkover from Ravi Chandrika Balga of Andhra Pradesh — even as Nisha, Nupur and Pooja Rani showed their ring superiority to advance to the quarterfinals.

Lovlina got a walkover in the welter class (69kg) pre-quarterfinals from Andhra Pradesh’s Marathamma Saitivada. The 21-year-old Assamese will be entering the ring for the first time when she takes on Mithrem Jagirdar of Gujarat, who stopped Delhi’s Anjali with an RSC-1 verdict in the quarters.

But the best bouts of the day were witnessed in the middleweight category when Railways’ Neetu beat AIP’s Kalawanti with a split verdict (3:2) and also Avneet Kaur of Chandigarh, who tackled tough Delhi pugilist, Shalakha Sansanwal, also by the same margin.