Olympic bound boxer L Devendro Singh (49kg) continued his purple patch at the 3rd?International ‘Republic of Kazakhstan President’s Cup’ in Almaty, Kazakhstan on Saturday (5 May 2012) with another resounding victory in the semi-finals of the event. The 20 year old triumphed over his more experienced opponent, Olympian and Asian Games silver medallist Birzhan Zakipov of Kazakhstan in an enthralling contest to make it to the final round.
Devendro, who beat Russian boxer Egorov Vasily in the quarters, made a strong start in the round of four and set the pace of the bout with his fluent ring movement. He was leading 3:2 after the opening three minutes of play and continued to add to his tally with some precise attacking in the second. Zakipov though, kept coming back at Devendro with his counter offence and was close on heels, with just a two points difference (11:9). In the final round the Kazakh boxer tried hard to take the game away from the Indian, but Singh was solid in his defence. He lost the round but managed to win the bout on count back, after the score were level at 16 all.?“My opponent was a very experienced boxer and fought with very sound technique and strategy, it was a tough fight and I am very happy to have returned on the winning side of it”,?express Devendro who will be looking to secure his first gold medal on the senior tour, when he takes on Cuba's top Light Flyweight boxer Yosvany Veita in the summit clash. It will be interesting to see how the Indian tackles the world number 6 who has also secured his qualification for the London Olympics and is just 10 days younger to him.
The other two Indian boxers in the fray in the round of four ? Asian Games silver medallist Manpreet Singh (91kg) and debutant Kanwar Preet Singh (+91kg) had to settle for a bronze medal finish from the tournament. The two Indian heavy weight boxers lost out to the respective Kazakh opponents in the semi-finals. Manpreet put up a brave performance against Abduganiev Arbek, but in the end came up short (12:19). Kanwar on the other hand went down in a one sided contest ? Dichko Ivan proving too strong for the Indian rookie; he lost on points 13:3