IBA World Junior Championships. First pairs of the semifinals are formed in Yerevan © IBA

It was a very successful day for Indian boxers in the 2023 IBA World Junior Championships in Yerevan, as their 8 athletes went to the semifinals. Five Russian boxers also went through the quarterfinals. Armenia had only five representatives in the first day of the quarterfinals, but four of them left the ring with the win.

First the stage was prepared for the women’s quarterfinal bouts. It was an easy walk for Kazakhstan’s Sila Bybolsynkizi (48 kg), as her opponent Reyah John from Trinidad and Tobago didn’t enter to the ring. She will meet in the semifinals with Payal Payal from India. The other semifinal pair was formed by Sin-Ai Shen from Taipei and Heghine Petrosyan from Armenia. The latter brought the first joy of the day to the home crowd by defeating Romania’s Nicoleta Scurt.

Right after that the first disappointment came to the crowd. Elen Papyan’s (54 kg) efforts didn’t give any result, as she lost to Poland's Zuzanna Golebiewska by unanimous decision. The latter will face Sydyk Ayazhan from Kazakhstan who looked too confident against Russia’s Vladislava Silina. The other semifinal bout was formed by Rocio Trigos (Romania) and Amisha Kerketta (India).

Only two quarterfinal bouts were held in women’s 66 and +80 kg weight categories, because of the low number of contestants. India went four from four in the women’s quarterfinals, when Nidhi Dhull (66 kg) and Prachi Tokas (+80 kg) defeated their opponents and walked to the semifinals as did Anastasia Gribanova (66 kg) from Russia and Zaineb Sammar (+80 kg) from Belgium.

Indian girls stayed almost perfect also in the evening session. Neha Lunthi (46 kg) defeated Belarus’ Anhelina Hizouskaya and will face in the semifinals with Anastasiia Tiunina (Russia). Pari Pari (50 kg) lost one round to Mexico’s Micaella Muller, but won the other two and will meet Maria Georgopoulou from Greece. Maftuna Musurmonova (46 kg) from Uzbekistan will meet Claudia Akcaniz from Spain. In the second semifinal of women’s 50 kg Gaukhan Zarden will face Snezhana Kuznetsova from Russia, and it is going to be one the most interesting fights of the semifinals.

Claudia Alkaniz from Spain celebrating her victory © IBA
Claudia Alkaniz from Spain celebrating her victory © IBA

Devi Khirom (60 kg) is the only Indian boxer who lost her quarterfinal fight in the women’s competition. Kira Leonova from Russia defeated her by split decision and went to the semifinals, where she will meet Molka Khalifi from Tunisia.  Tolganay Kassimkhan (Kazakhstan) and Nana Pipia (Georgia) formed the second semifinal pair in women’s 60 kg.

Armenia’s Arno Darchinyan and Ecuador’s Jair Bonilla produced an exciting fight in men’s 46 kg weight category, but in the end it was Darchinyan who won by unanimous decision. He will face Uzbekistan’s Abdurakhmon Makhmudjonov in the semifinal bout. Korea’s Hyeonmin Lee and Russia’s Islam Magomedov also looked very confident in the ring and formed the other pair of the semifinalists. 

European Junior champion Tigran Hovsepyan (50 kg) from Armenia was too dominant in the ring against Zimbabwe’s Crein Moyo and now will face Hungary’s Dominic Gombay in a fight for a final spot. Bulgaria’s Angel Dimitrov and Russia’s Khusan Kokhkhorov will decide the other finalist of the weight category.

Jatin Jatin (54 kg) was one of the two Indian athletes in the men’s competition who managed to go through the quarterfinals. He defeated Georgia’s Davit Mushkudiani. His opponent in the semifinals will be Russia’s Pavel Kondrashov, who’s quarterfinal bout against Uzbekistan’s Shahbozbek Ergashov was one of the best fights of the day. Nurassyl Tulebek from Kazakhstan and Przemyslav Soczowka from Poland will face each other in the second semifinals of the weight category.

In the men’s 60 kg weight category Andranik Martirosyan from Armenia defeated Uladzislau Kaurau (Belarus). The strong punch from Armenian shocked Kaurau, and the referee had to stop the fight at the end of the second round. Abdullah Zeadeh from Jordan looks very confident so far in the competition. He defeated Alikhan Asker from Kazakhstan in a narrow battle and now will try to prevent Martirosyan from reaching the final. Firozjon Sadullaev (Uzbekistan) and Akaki Basaria from Georgia will decide who will be the second finalist.

In the evening session India’s Hardik Panwar defeated Korea’s Damhyeon Park (80 kg) by split decision. His opponent in the semifinals will be Andrei Rumiantsau from Belarus. Russia’s Bairamkhan Ashurov was too strong for Georgia’s Zurab Oboladze and the referee stopped the competition at the end of the second round. He will face Taipei’s Guanhao Pan in the second semifinal bout of the men’s 80 kg weight category.

Tomorrow the last pairs of the semifinals will be formed both in women’s and men’s competitions.