Women's World Championships: Boxer Nikhat and two others pack a punch to confirm medals

The trio enters the semifinals of the IBA Women’s World Boxing Championships in Istanbul, Turkey.

Published: 17th May 2022 01:10 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th May 2022 01:10 AM   |  A+A-

Nikhat later revealed that she had entered the bout with a plan and she was thrilled that she managed to execute it. (Photo | Special Arranagement)

Express News Service

CHENNAI: Boxer Nikhat Zareen knows a thing or two about being patient. Having waited in the wings for several years, she is finally in the forefront and she seems to be relishing the moment. 

On Monday, she was the first from the country to assure a medal at the ongoing IBA Women's World Championships in Istanbul, Turkey.

Up against England's Charley-Sian Taylor Davison in the quarterfinals, Nikhat danced around the ring with plenty of finesse to dominate the bout and post a handsome victory (5-0).

For someone who has watched MC Mary Kom, on merit of course, make 48kg/52kg her own ever since the early 2000s, this is a massive lift for Nikhat and also Boxing Federation of India (BFI) given that the former is in her twilight years.

The second Indian to take the ring on Monday, the Telangana boxer Nikhat seemed to be operating at a different level and showed her attacking intent. 

Despite having a height disadvantage, Nikhat used her speed and accuracy to breach her opponent's defence on multiple occasions during the bout. She was relentless in the opening two rounds as her rival found it hard to cope with the pressure. 

Nikhat later revealed that she had entered the bout with a plan and she was thrilled that she managed to execute it. 

"She was tall and a southpaw. My strategy was to block her right hand, which was her strength. I was successful in that and I'm happy to secure a medal for the country. Hopefully, I can push on and return with a gold medal," she said.

Nikhat's next hurdle is Caroline De Almeida of Brazil, who also had an impressive outing on the day.

Manisha Moun (57kg) and Parveen (63kg) also tasted success on the day, assuring medals for themselves in the process. Manisha, a 2018 quarterfinalist (54kg), got one step further this time after a hard-fought victory (4-1) over Mongolia's Namuun Monkhor. 

The Haryana girl will be up against Irma Testa of Italy next. Parveen, a debutant, became the third from the country to confirm a medal with a victory over Tajikistan's Shoira Zulkaynarova.

However, Nitu (48kg), veteran Pooja Rani (81kg),Anamika (50kg) and Jaismine (60kg) fell just short of medals after losing their respective bouts. 

Up against reigning Asian champions Alua Balkibekova of Kazakhstan, Nitu always seemed to be behind. 

The former, with her potent punches, caught the Indian on multiple occasions. In the final round, Nitu produced a much better display but that was too little, too late as she lost by a split verdict (2-3).


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