The Indian Boxing team continued its good run at the Giraldo Córdova Cardin” Memorial Boxing Tournament in Havana, Cuba, with three more boxers making it to the semi-finals in the 41st edition of the tournament. Nanao Singh (49kg), Suranjoy Singh (52kg) and Santosh Harijan (52kg) obtained a spot in the last four of their weight category beating their respective opponents.
With Kuldeep Singh (75kg), Manpreet Singh (91kg) and Paramjeet Samota (91kg) having already secured a semifinal berth, India now has six pugilists with a sure shot chance of a medal at the prestigious tournament in the traditional boxing power house nation.
Thokchom Nanao Singh, playing his second international tournament of the year, ousted Elsi of Peru in what was a clinical performance. The Asian silver medallist, who suffered a hand injury, last year, staged a stunning comeback to win the gold at the 34th National Games. The 20 year old playing in the light fly weight category, completely dominated his opponent from the get go. With his tactics and acute skills he registered a comprehensive win on points 32:9. Nanao will now meet Muzaparov of Kazakhstan in the semi-finals.
In the fly weight division, Suranjoy Singh was making his first international appearance since the 2010 Asian games, where he bagged a bronze medal. The Commonwealth Games gold medallist showed glimpses of his speed and punching abilities as he trounced his Venezuelan opponent, Jesus by virtue of points 27:9. In the semis he will take on J Neto of Brazil.
In the same weight class, Santosh Harijan continued his winning streak against Artur Cremildo of Mozambique. The Mozambican was no match for the ‘in form’ Santosh. The fast moves and the swift counter attacks of the 23 year old left Cremildo completely at bay. He went on to secure his place in the semi-finals with a 32:8 victory, where he will lock horns with Cuba Main team boxer Ramirez.
The Indian challenge saw upsets in the form of Amandeep Singh (49kg) and Shiva Thapa (56kg). Amandeep lost to Veitia Yoswany of Cuba 12:22 on points. And although the final score depicts a different story, the CWG Bronze medallist gave a very good account of himself against the Cuban boxer. Shiva Thapa lost to Robenilson of Brazil 17:7. The 17 year old was a bit unlucky as the Brazilian adopted dodgy tactics, which should have earned him a few cautions.
In an interesting turn of events the tournament will also witness two Indian boxers face off each other. Paramjeet Samota, who usually fights in the super heavy weight category, is testing the competition in the heavy weight division. And the CWG gold medallist will take on his compatriot Manpreet Singh, a silver medallist at the 2010 Asian Games in the semi-finals. Kuldeep will take on Dominican Castillo Junior in his semi-final bout.