It was a day of mixed fortunes for Visakhapatnam siblings in the quarter-final stage of the 59th Senior National Boxing Championship at Lal Bahadur Stadium on Friday. While the elder brother 23-year-old Vankala Durga Rao, representing Karnataka, steeled himself to brush aside Yudhveer's challenge 21-16 in the bantamweight category (56 kg), the younger one, 19-year-old Balakrishna (Andhra Pradesh) went down tamely to Delhi's Gorav Bidhuri (Delhi) 7-11 in the flyweight category (52 kg). Durga Rao, who had a cut on his nose in the third round, regretted that his brother lost the bout.
"It was a bad day for him. He is a good boxer. It would have done of world of good for him if he had reached the semi-finals. He could have got an employment,'' said Rao.
Hailing from a poor family, Durga Rao and Balakrishna are the younger two of the five brothers. The elder three earn their livelihood by driving the auto in the steel city of Visakhapatnam. But Rao and Balakrishna took to this sport from a young age. They were spotted by SV Sharma to train at Veerabhaktaanjeneya Boxing Club. During his bout, Durga Rao was at his aggressive best in the second round, to lead 15-5. But in the third and final round, Yudhveer landed a blow on Durga Rao's nose. A defensive Durga Rao had to be cautious and gave away some points to the MP boxer. However, Durga Rao emerged winner, thanks to the big lead he had taken in the second round.
In the same light weight category event, 2009 Asian Championship silver medallist T Nanao Singh continued his impressive run in the championship. Showing good footwork and technique, the Services pugilist powered past Steel Plant's Vinod Kumar 19-9. Meanwhile 2010 Commonwealth bronze medalist Amandeep Singh breezed past Salman Anwar of Maharashtra 28-18.
AP had a bad day as all their boxers made the exit. K Sagar lost in the lightweight category to Pankaj Saini of Punjab while seasoned campaigner Dilbag Singh was too good for Surender, winning at 24-6.
Light flyweight (46-49 kgs): Pankaj Saini (Pun) bt K Sagar (AP) 20-13; T Nanao Singh (SSCB) bt Vinod Kumar (SPSB) 19-9; Naveen Kumar (Har) bt L Amarjeet Singh (Man) 7-5; Amandeep (RSPB) bt Salman Anwar (Mah) 28-18.
Flyweight (52 kgs): Santosh Fakirapa (Goa) bt Labir Sing (AIP) 15-10; Madan Lal(SSCB) bt J. Bhaskar (SPSB) 18-12; Mahimai Nathar (Kar) bt Sandeep (Red) +13-13 (countback); Gaurav Bidhuri (Del) bt V Balakrishna (AP) 11-7.
Bantamweight (56 kgs): Ashish (UP) bt Kulwinder Singh (Pun) 19-14; Sauban Santosh (Man) bt Chote Lal (SSCB) 17-11; Ajay Kumar (Har) bt Lal Nunhlav (Miz) 13-4; V Durga Rao (Kar) bt Yudhveer (MP) 21-16.
Lightweight (60 kgs): Anil Kumar (Bih) bt Mahesh Singh (UP) 15-13; Neeraj Goyat (Tri) bt Surinder Singh (SSCB) 22-17; Sandeep Kumar (Har) bt Vikas (J&K)18-13;Vikas (RSPB) bt Rohit Toas (Del) 19-16.
Light welterweight (64 kgs): Aditya Mane (Mah) bt Ankit (HP) 12-12 (countback); Mandeep (RSPB) bt Devadarshan (Har) 10-9; Nerenser Singh (Pun) bt Kulvinder (Ker) 7-3; Manish Pawar (Del) bt Afjal Ahmed(Cht) 34-13.
Welterweight (69 kg): Dilbag Singh (RSPB) bt K Surender (AP) 24-6; Manihs Vikey (MP) bt Suresh (Cht) 13-6; Ynaveen (Har) bt Yogesh Nishad (Mah) 13-7; Vijay (Sik) bt Balvinder (Asm) 15-13.
Middle (75 kg): Rajwinder Singh (Jhr) bt Brijesh Meena (Miz) 30-10.