New Delhi: Four Indians assured themselves of a bronze medal each after reaching semifinals in their respective categories in the 3rd China Open boxing tournament at Guiyang on Thursday.
Sunil Kumar (52kg), Ajay Kumar (56kg), Jaideep (75kg) and Manjeet Singh (+91kg) made it to the last four of the tournament played under the new 'Ten-Point must scoring system'.
In the quarterfinals, Sunil was up against Artem Mirazaev of Russia. With his quick-fire jabs and swift body blows, the Indian Railways pugilist put his Russian opponent on the backfoot, right from the start.
Mirazev did well to squeeze in a few punches, but in the end it was Sunil who emerged triumphant on a split decision to march into the semifinals.
Sunil now takes on local lad Chang Young for a place in the semifinals.
The 19-year-old Ajay, playing in his first international competition, beat Philippines boxer Nico Magliquian in a split decision to advance into the semifinals, where he takes on You Lunhai of China.
Middle weight boxer Jaideep also secured a semifinal spot by defeating Kazakh boxer Chingiz Verdybekov.
But the Indian contingent suffered early setbacks in the women's division. Pinki Jangra (51kg), Preeti Beniwal (60kg) and Neetu Chahal (75kg) all failed to make it past the quarterfinals.
While Jangra lost to Xu Shiqi of China, Beniwal was upstaged by Alexis Pritchard of New Zealand and Neetu came up short against another Kiwi Magan Alila Maka.