Tokyo Olympics 2020, Women's Boxing: Pooja Rani loses in quarterfinals, Olympic dream ends

Tokyo Olympics 2020, Women's Middleweight Boxing quarters: Get the live streaming updates between Pooja Rani and Li Qian starts at 3.36 PM IST.

India's Pooja Rani will be in action on Saturday.   -  AP

Welcome to the coverage of the Women's middleweight quarterfinal between India's Pooja Rani and Li Qian (China).

Pooja Rani's Tokyo 2020 Olympics campaign comes to an end.

LI QIAN BEATS POOJA RANI BY UNANIMOUS DECISION!

ROUND 3: Li Qian is just keeping her range and drawing Pooja Rani forward. Once she comes close, the Chinese star is connecting with lethal blows. Pooja Rani hasn't landed a clean punch in a long time. Li Qian feinted and struck a brilliant right upper cut. It's over and Pooja Rani has lost this bout. An effortless win for Li Qian.

ROUND 2: Pooja Rani is playing into Li Qian's trap. Pure dominance from the Chinese boxer. Rani is struggling to get her punches right. A flurry of unreturned strikes from Li Qian. This might be a landslide. Pooja Rani has to get it going. Another 10-9 round across scorecards for Li Qian.

ROUND 1: Pooja Rani is being aggressive here. Li Qian calmly stays on her back foot. Not many punches have connected so far. Li Qian gets the better of an exchange of jabs, but this fight has been quite a dull one so far. Pooja Rani could have lost this round by a whisker. Li Qian takes it 10-9 on all five scorecards.

AND THE QF BOUT BEGINS!

The boxers march out! Pooja Rani comes out first followed by her Chinese opponent Li Qian.

We're minutes away from the start of the bout.

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POOJA RANI: BOXER PROFILE

Form guide: 2021: Gold at Asian championships, UAE; Silver at Boxam International Tournament, Spain; 2020: Bronze at Cologne World Cup, Germany.

Ironically, despite being from the hub of boxing, Bhiwani girl Pooja Rani did not have any interest in the sport until her college lecturer Mukesh Rani persuaded her to don the gloves. Mukesh introduced 18-year-old Pooja to her husband Sanjay Sheoran, a boxing coach and the son of legendary boxer Hawa Singh. Sanjay convinced Pooja’s father, who was a policeman, to let his daughter box.

Pooja hid her bruises and cuts from her father to pursue boxing to win a gold medal at the Haryana state youth championships, followed by a silver at the Nationals youth championships in 2009, within months.

READ: Pooja Rani doesn’t want to overdo anything before Olympics

Pooja’s improvement removed her roadblocks and fetched her more glory. She progressed to win multiple National titles, an Asian Games medal, a South Asian Games gold medal and two Asian crowns.

Even though she had achieved most of her success in 75kg, Pooja had switched to get her first Asian title in 81kg in 2019. However, she returned to 75kg after being guided by foreign coach Raffaele Bergamasco to begin her pursuit of Olympics glory. She was encouraged after getting another Asian title in the middleweight division in 2021.