CHENNAI: On a day when two Indian boxers assured themselves silver medals, Vikas Krishan made a puzzling call to hand a walkover before his semifinal bout in the ongoing Asian Championships on Friday.
He was supposed to go up against fourth-seeded Korean Dongyun Lee in the clash. No one had definite answers about why Vikas took the decision, and it remains a mystery as to why the top-seeded pugilist denied himself a chance to win and go for gold.
While Shiva Thapa and Sumit Sangwan notched up big wins to enter the final in the continental meet being held in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Vikas’ decision has forced the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) to seek an explanation from the 25-year-old. It has been learnt that the national body will grill him after his arrival.
But, the BFI will have to wait for some time as the two-time Olympian is due to take part in the World Series of Boxing (WSB) — a semi-professional event approved by the International Boxing Association (amateur) (AIBA) — that will be held in France soon after the current meet.
Talking about WSB, there were whispers that Vikas’ involvement in the event could have influenced his decision.
The Haryana native is one of the three Indian boxers who was recently roped in by the Britain-based franchise British Lionhearts, along with Manoj Kumar and K Shyam Kumar. Manoj’s coach and brother Rajesh Kumar revealed that the former is likely to leave on May 16.
The Lionhearts are scheduled to face the France Fighting Roosters in the quarterfinals in Paris on May 11. The return leg will be held on May 20 in London. The ongoing Asian meet is due to get over on May 7.
Most of the boxers and coaches whom Express tried to contact chose not to comment on Vikas’ decision. Some officials could not be reached, while some claimed that they were not aware of what had transpired. “Well, I have not had a chance to talk to them today. I shall get in touch with them (boxers and coaching staff in Tashkent), get the details and then get back to you,” a top official remarked.
Having already made the cut — so have Shiva, Sumit, and Amit Phangal — for the World Championships that will be held later this year, Vikas is now likely to face tough questions from every corner.
Manoj (64kg), Kavinder Singh (52kg), Gaurav Bidhuri (56kg), Manish Panwar (81kg) and Satish Kumar (+91kg) are the other Indians who still have a chance to be a part of the top event. All of them will be seen in action on Saturday and Sunday.