Tokyo Olympic-bound Indian boxer Amit Panghal ends up with bronze at Governor's Cup in Russia
Amit Panghal lost to world champion Shakhobidin Zoirov in the semi-finals
New Delhi: Olympic-bound Indian boxer Amit Panghal (52kg) settled for a bronze medal at the Governor's Cup in St Petersburg, Russia after going down to world champion and familiar foe Shakhobidin Zoirov in the semi-finals.
Amit, a world championships silver-medallist, lost 5-0 to the Uzbek, who is also the reigning Olympic champion.
This was the Indian's second loss to Zoirov after the 2019 world championships. In that event, he had lost to Zoirov in the finals.
Both the boxers are bound for the Tokyo Games, to be held in July-August.
Zoirov had been upstaged by India's Asian silver-winning boxer Deepak Kumar in the Strandja Memorial Tournament in Bulgaria earlier this year.
Amit was the lone Indian to make the medal rounds of the Governor's Cup after seasoned competitors like Olympic-bound Ashish Kumar (75kg) and Sumit Sangwan (81kg) bowed out early.
The Haryana lad is being seen as a strong medal contender in Tokyo despite the fact that it would be his maiden Olympic appearance.
The 23-year-old has been a consistent performer for the past three years, claiming gold medals at the Asian Games and the Asian Championships.
He also became India's first world championship finalist in 2019.
A total of 100 Indian athletes have so far qualified and another 25 to 35 might make the cut for the delayed Tokyo Olympics scheduled from 23 July to 8 August.
This will be the Indian women's hockey team's third appearance at the Games, the previous two arriving in 1980 and 2016.
32 percent still want the Games to be cancelled altogether and 30 percent want the games to be delayed again, down from 43 percent and 40 percent in last month's survey, respectively.