Age just a number for Kavita

Kavita Chahal, mother of a four-year-old son, toyed with Rajasthan's Barbara Sampson to enter the heavyweight semifinal in the fourth Elite Women's Nationals.

Kavita Chahal (red) had it easy against Barbara Sampson in the quarterfinal of the fourth Elite National Women's Boxing Championship in Kannur on Friday.   -  S.K. MOHAN

 

She's 33 and the mother of a four-year-old son, still Kavita Chahal packs a punch in the boxing ring. A two-time World Championship bronze medallist, the policewoman from Haryana toyed with Rajasthan's Barbara Sampson and entered the heavyweight semifinal in the fourth Elite Women's Nationals at the Mundayad indoor stadium here on Friday.

Her tall frame offered Kavita a wonderful reach and with her opponent adopting a crouching stance almost all through, trying to get in, the Haryana star appeared almost a foot taller than her opponent. That made her job easier and Kavita frequently used the right upper cut and the right jab to good effect and in the second round, a right hook forced Barbara to take an eight-count.

“I have two training sessions now instead of three to stay fit,” said Kavita, one of the four Arjuna Awardees in women's boxing. “I hope to continue for another two years and since my category (above 81kg) is not an Olympic event, I will focus on Asian championships.”

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Haryana's 20-year-old Shashi Chopra, who has moved from 57kg  — which brought her 2017 youth World gold — to 60kg, also found the going easy against Chandigarh's Manju with a 5-0 verdict to enter the lightweight semifinal.

“I lost weight to stay in the 57kg but I found it very difficult to put my full effort in boxing. And since the 60kg is also an Olympic category, I moved up to that,” said Shashi, a wrestler-turned-boxer.

Meanwhile Railway's Sonia Chahal, the 2017 World champion, appeared a bit shaky against Himachal Pradesh's Vinakshi and made the last-four stage with a split verdict in the 57kg.

Select results (quarterfinals)

Light flyweight (48kg): Monika (Rly) bt Rajani Singh (UP) 3-2; Anchu Sabu (Ker) bt Aarti (Har) 5-0.

Flyweight (51kg): Jyoti Gulia (Rly) bt Mansi Sharma (UP) 5-0; Soibam Rebika Devi (Man) bt Joy Kumari (Asm) 5-0.

Bantamweight (54kg): M. Meenakumari Devi (Pol) bt Sabiha Khanam (Jha) 5-0; Meenakashi (Rly) bt Manju Basumatary (Asm) 5-0; Featherweight (57kg): Sonia Chahal (Rly) bt Vinakshi (HP) 3-2; Sakshi Chaudhary (Har) bt T.C. Lalremruati (Miz) 5-0.

Lightweight (60kg): Shashi Chopra (Har) bt Manju (Chd) 5-0; Pavitra (Rly) bt Suman Kumari (Raj) RSC-3.

Light welterweight (64kg): Pwilao Basumatary (Rly) bt Siwi (Har) 3-2; Ankushita Boro (Asm) bt Abisak Vanlamawii (Miz) 5-0.

Welterweight (69kg): Lalita (Raj) bt Priyanka (Bih) 5-0; Meena Rani (Rly) bt Shretima Thakur (HP) 5-0.

Middleweight (75kg): K.A. Indraja (Ker) bt Manu Badhan (Pun) 5-0; Nupur (Har) bt Neha Chauhan (Utk) RSC-1.

Light heavyweight (81kg): Shaili Singh (UP) bt Kavya (Kar) RSC-1; Bhagyabati Kachari (Rly) bt Saara Qureshi (Tel) RSC-1.

Heavyweight (above 81kg): Kavita Chahal (Pol) bt Barbara Sampson (Raj) 5-0; P.M. Anaswara (Ker) bt Naganika Gonella (Tel) 5-0.