Nikhat Zareen stuns two-time world champion, advances into semis
New Delhi, March 19 (PTI): Continuing her giant-killing run, Indian boxer Nikhat Zareen on Friday stunned two-time world champion Nazym Kyzaibay of Kazakhstan to enter the women’s 51kg semifinals at the Bosphorus Boxing Tournament in Istanbul.
Zareen, who had earlier defeated 2019 world champion Paltceva Ekaterina of Russia in the pre-quarterfinals, looked unfazed and confident against her opponent from Kazakhstan.
She stamped her authority right from the beginning and prevailed 4-1 win over Kyzaibay, a gold medallist from 2014 and 2016 World Championships.
Zareen has ensured herself at least a bronze medal with a place in the last-four.
Apart from Zareen, 2018 Commonwealth Games gold medallist Gaurav Solanki (57kg) also sailed into the semifinals after a tough contest against local pugilist Aykol Mizan.
Both the boxers attacked throughout the bout but Solanki showed his technical supremacy to secure a 4-1 win and assured himself of at least a bronze medal.
Among other women boxers, Sonia Lather (57kg), Parveen (60kg) and Jyoti (69kg) made exits with losses in their respective quarterfinals. Meanwhile, Shiva Thapa (63kg) lost 1-4 to Turkey’s Hakan Dogan in an intense bout.
The fourth day of the tournament will see two Indian boxers fighting in their respective semifinal bouts later on Friday.
Zareen will face another tough challenge as she takes on 2019 World Championships silver-medallist Busenaz Cakiroglu of Turkey while Solanki will be up against Argentina’s Nirco Cuello.