New Delhi:Two-time national champion Jasveer Singh (81kg) was assured of at least a bronze medal without even stepping into the ring on a mixed day for Indian boxers in the AIBA 3 Star China Cup in Guiyang city on Monday.
Two of the three Indian pugilists in action on Monday lost their bouts but not before putting on a valiant fight against their more fancied rivals.
Olympian Diwakar Prasad (60kg), who is making a comeback to the ring after more then two years in wilderness, was the one who emerged a winner on Monday beating Germany's Eugen Burhard 3-2 in a hard-fought contest to enter the quarterfinals.
However, there was heartbreak for S Santhosh Singh (54kg) and Lakhbir Singh (64kg) both of whom lost by a whisker, Indian Boxing Federation Secretary General P K Muralidharan Raja said from Guiyang.
Up against Russia's Vladimir Nikitin, Santhosh went down 2-3 despite a spirited late fight after being down 0-2 in the first round.
Lakhbir's was an even tougher contest and after being down 2-3 at the end of the second round, he bounced back to make it 3-3 in the final three minutes against Russian Adlan Abdur Rashidov.
The 20-year-old Indian was tied 7-7 in the count-back as well but ended up on the losing side after three of the five judges declared Rashidov as the better of the two boxers.
Jasveer, meanwhile, got a bye into the semis and will take on Chinese Meng Fen Long in the final-four round.
on Tuesday, Sunil Kumar (51kg) and two-time national champion Kuldeep Singh (75kg) will be in action in their respective pre-quarterfinal bouts.
The China Cup, a ranking points tournament, features 102 boxers from 19 countries including traditional powerhouses like Cuba, Russia and Kazakhstan.