New Delhi:Thokchom Nanao Singh assured himself of a medal by advancing to semi-finals while Olympic bronze winner Vijender Singh pulled off a stunning triumph over Uzbek Atoev Abbos to enter the quarterfinals of the Asian Boxing Championships in Zhuhai, China on Tuesday.
Youth world champion Nanao Singh (48kg) rallied to beat Chia-Lun Lu of Chinese Taipei 8-4 to reach the semifinals. He trailed by a couple of points in the opening three minutes before getting his act together in the next two rounds.
"We were slightly scared after the first two rounds but Nanao boxed really well to pull it off," national coach Gurbax Singh Sandhu said.
Nanao will face Mongolia's Nyambayar Tughtsogt in the semi-finals.
Meanwhile, Vijender stunned Abbos, a 2007 light heavy weight (81kg) world champion before shifting to middle weight (75kg) this year, 10-7 in an exciting contest.
The two were tied 3-3 at the end of the first round but taking advantage of his height and reach, Vijender managed to break his opponent's defence in the next two rounds to win comfortably.
"It is a huge win for me. He was a world champion and was the favourite before the bout. But I was least bothered and took the ring with confidence," an elated Vijender said.
"We were both cautious to start with but gradually I managed to break his defence. I had the height advantage and a longer reach than him. This win has given me a lot of confidence. Now, I think I can win the gold medal," the 23-year-old Vijender, who won a silver medal at the previous edition in Mongolia, said.
Vijender takes on Kyrgyzstan's Ruslan Keripov in the quarterfinals on Thursday.
In the feather weight (57kg) category, Chhote Lal Yadav also managed a sensational 15-1 triumph over Maxat Ospanov of Kazakhstan to enter the quarter-finals.
"He was a good boxer but I was better. I didn't allow him to penetrate my guard and attacked him in the second and third round," Yadav said.
The 22-year-old from Uttar Pradesh was a gold medallist at the sub-junior and junior Asian Championships. He got to compete in the event only because Olympian Akhil Kumar was ruled out due to a wrist injury.
Yadav has another tough bout at hand as he takes on Thailand's Masuk Wuttichai in the quarter-finals.
The lone disappointment of the day was Jagat Singh Belal (69kg) losing to Kazakh Serik Sapiyev in the quarter-finals.
Meanwhile, Vijender's cousin Balwinder (64kg) and Gurlal Singh (90kg) got first-round byes and are now in the quarter-finals.