Mixed fortunes for Indian boxers (Boxing, Lead)

August 9th, 2008 - 10:33 pm ICT by IANS  

By V. Krishnaswamy
Beijing, Aug 9 (IANS) India had mixed fortunes in the boxing competition at the Olympic Games here Saturday as Vijender Kumar outclassed his Gambian rival Jack Badou in the first round of the 75-kg category while Dinesh Kumar bowed out after losing his light-heavy (81-kg) opening round bout to Abdelhafid Benchabla of Algeria. Vijender, one of India’s hopes for a medal, beat his rival on points 13-2.

An elated Vijender said: “He was quite good. I was not expecting him to be as good as he was. It was a tough fight.”

Vijender, 22, silver medallist at the Asian Championship at Ulaanbaatar, will next face Angkhan Chomphuhuang of Thailand, a gold medallist in Wushu at the 2002 Asian Games in Busan.

Of his next opponent, Vijender said: “He is a very good boxer. It will be a tough fight, but I am also looking forward to being on the podium. The last time I faced him I lost. This time I look forward to getting my revenge.”

Dinesh lost when the referee stopped the contest.

Indian coach Gurbaksh Singh said, “I did not expect Dinesh to win, but I did expect Vijender to go ahead. Dinesh is a new boy and Vijender has more experience.”

“Our biggest achievement is that our boxers have started talking about medals and even gold medals. This is a big achievement in itself.”

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