The Asian Olympic Qualifiers are currently being hosted by the International Olympic Committee’s Boxing Task Force in Amman, Jordan. As boxers are battling it out to secure berth for the main event in Tokyo, two Indian pugilists are very close to qualification. Simranjit Kaur and Sakshi Chaudhary, the two female boxers from the country have advanced to quarterfinals, and a semi final entry will secure their place in the Olympics.
Started in 2nd March, a total of 63 boxers were selected for the qualifier, including eight men and five women boxers from India. Qualifying for the semis of the tournament will automatically earn the boxers an entry into Tokyo 2020.
Simranjit and Sakshi, currently in the quarter final stage, are just one win away to see themselves secure a place in the main event.
Competing in the women’s 60 kg category, Simranjit dominated Rimma Volossenko of Kazakhstan 5-0 in the pre quarterfinal bout of the event.
The official Twitter handle of BFI released a video where Simrajit spoke about the match. Check it out below-
Post the late-night dhamaka💥by @Simranjitboxer, listen in what she had to say about her bout while she countered the Kazak boxer, who tried all the tricks to defeat her!#PunchMeinHaiDum#boxing#Jordan#Tokyo2020 pic.twitter.com/HHKFswpW0w
— Boxing Federation (@BFI_official) March 5, 2020
Following the stunning victory, the Asian Championships silver medallist said: “Today was my first bout… the pre-quarters against the Kazakhstan boxer. I won it. I followed the strategy that the coaches had shared with me. They had told me how to play against the Kazakh boxer so I simply followed the same and won.”
The 24 year old, who will take on no. 2 seed Monkhoryn Namuun of Mongolia on 9 March in the quarter final, thanked BFI and her mentors for her success.
“I want to take this opportunity to thank the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) and coaches for their support. Thanks to everyone… just keep praying and supporting me,” she added.
Sakshi, who competes in the women’s 57 kg category, surprised the audience as she defeated Asian silver-medallist Nilawan Techasuep of Thailand, who is seeded 4th in the qualifiers.
The former junior world champion won her match 4-1, and revealed the strategy from the coaches that worked in her favour in the post match clip released by BFI. Check it out below-
— Boxing Federation (@BFI_official) March 4, 2020
“I stuck to the strategy of counter-attack through the bout and I think she couldn’t handle it. My coaches had told me not to deviate from the plan and I didn’t,” the 19 year old said.
On 9th March, Sakshi will be taking on Im Aeji of South Korea, where she will be aiming for a swift victory to earn her maiden Olympic entry.