In Tashkent, Uzbekistan, on Thursday, Narender Berwal put on a dominant performance to win admirably and move on to the pre-quarterfinals of the IBA Men’s World Boxing Championships 2023. Govind Sahani and Deepak Kumar also advanced to the next round.
Narender (+92kg), who previously placed in the quarterfinals at the World Championships, started his current campaign for a medal by defeating Muhammad Abroridinov of Tajikistan by a score of 4-1 in a tightly contested match. In the neck-and-neck contest, both of the pugilists who took home bronze at the 2022 Asian Championships gave it their all right away. In the opening round, Narender prevailed by landing solid blows and dodging close-ranged assaults from his adversary.
In spite of a stern fight put up by Abroridinov, the Hisar-born pugilist continued to attack on the front foot in the next two rounds and prevailed in the bout. He will face 2021 World Youth Championships bronze medalist Fernando Arzola of Cuba in the next round, as per a press release from the Boxing Federation of India (BFI).
Meanwhile, the record six-time Asian medalist Shiva Thapa went down fighting against Dos Reis Yuri of Brazil in the 63.5kg category. In what was a fiercely fought matchup, the Indians suffered a narrow 3-4 defeat on points after the bout was reviewed and exited the competition.
Earlier in the day, the 2022 Thailand Open champion Govind (48 kg) and 2019 Asian silver medallist Deepak (51 kg) kicked off their respective campaigns with identical victories.
Govind, who has had an outstanding year so far with a gold at the Nationals Championships and a silver at the 74th Strandja Memorial, continued his rich vein of form as he made lightwork of Mehron Shafiev of Tajikistan to secure a 5-0 win.
Deepak, on the other hand, was also at his attacking best as he ousted Luis Delgado of Ecuador with his supreme technical ability to seal an emphatic victory by unanimous decision. Following their emphatic victories, Govind will face the top-seeded Sakhil Alakhverdovi of Georgia, who won bronze at the last World Championships, while Deepak will take on the Tokyo Olympics bronze medalist and reigning World Champion Saken Bibossinov of Kazakhstan.