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Mary Kom, Amit Panghal qualify as 8 Indian boxers secure quotas for Tokyo Olympics

Riding on her barrage of left cross and clear punches, the six-time world champion Mary notched up a comfortable 5-0 win over Philippines’ Irish Magno in her quarterfinal bout for a ticket to her second Olympic Games. The 37-year-old will now take on reigning Asian Games gold medallist Yuan Chang of China in her quest for a spot in the final of this event.

Earlier in the day, World Championships silver medallist Amit Panghal (52kg) defeated Carlo Paalam of Philippines 4-1 to secure the sixth quota for India at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics by entering the semi-finals. He will next take on China’s Hu Jianguan, a bronze medallist at the Rio Olympics as well as the 2019 Asian Championships.

In the last Indian bout of the day, world bronze-medallist Simranjit Kaur (60kg) thrashed second seed Namuun Monkhor of Mongolia 5-0 to secure her first Olympic place. Simranjjit, also an Asian silver-medallist, will face third seed Shih-Yi Wu of Taiwan in the semifinals after a fine performance against Monkhor. With Simranjjit’s win, the number of Indian boxers securing Olympic berths went up to eight.

On Sunday, Vikas Krishan (69kg), Pooja Rani (75kg) and Satish Kumar (+91kg), Lovlina Borgohain (69kg) and Ashish Kumar (75kg) had become the first set of Indian boxers to qualify for quadrennial showpiece scheduled in July-August this year. Meanwhile,World Championships bronze medallist Manish Kaushik (63kg), went down 2-3 to third seed and Asian Games silver medallist Chinzorig Baatarsukh of Mongolia in a hard-fought quarter-final.

However, Kaushik can still fulfil his Olympic dream as with six boxers qualifying from 63kg, he will get once more chance with a box-off opportunity, where the losing quarterfinalist players will have yet another shot. In his quest, Manish will face Harrison Garside of Australia in the box-off bout on 11th and a win there will secure his Olympic quota. It was however, the end of the road in the Asian Qualifiers for former world youth champion Sakshi Chaudhary (57kg) who was blanked 0-5 by Korea’s Im Aeji in the quarter-finals.

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