Shiva Thapa, Pooja Rani into finals of Olympic Test event

Indian pugilists Shiva Thapa and Pooja Rani advanced to the final of the boxing Olympic Test event, while Nikhat Zareen and Vahlimpuia lost in the semis.

Shiva Thapa advanced to the 63kg final after beating Japan’s Daisuke Narimatsu in a split verdict.   -  Ritu Raj Konwar

Former world bronze-winner Shiva Thapa advanced to the final with a hard-fought triumph along with Pooja Rani, but two other Indians ended with bronze medals after losing their opening bouts at the Olympic Test event for boxing here on Wednesday.

In the morning session of the semifinals, Thapa, a four-time Asian medallist who claimed his third national title earlier this month, defeated Japan’s Daisuke Narimatsu in a split verdict in the 63kg category.

Rani, a former Asian Games bronze-medallist, got the better of Brazil’s Beatriz Soares in a unanimous decision in the 75kg category. Rani had won a silver medal at the Asian Championships earlier this year.

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However, former junior world champion Nikhat Zareen (51kg) and Vahlimpuia (75kg) lost their respective semifinal bouts to end with bronze medals. Both the pugilists had made the last-four stage without any preliminary contest owing to the small size of their respective draws.

Zareen lost in a split decision to Japan’s Sana Kawano, while Vahlimpuia was also beaten by a local favourite in Yuito Moriwaki but in a unanimous call by the judges.

The remaining three Indian boxers in fray -- Asian silver-medallist Sumit Sangwan (91kg), Ashish (69kg), and Simranjeet Kaur (60kg) -- will fight their semifinal bouts in the evening session.

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