Day five of the AIBA World Boxing Championship in Almaty, Kazakhstan and 2010 Asian Games Silver Medal winner Manpreet Singh (91kg) became the first Indian boxer to advance to the round of 16 after defeating his opponent in the preliminaries of the heavy weight division. Manpreet, who got a bye in the first round, was up against Keddy Agnes Seychelles in his opening bout and had little trouble advancing to the next stage of the Championship.
Singh has had a long break from competition and is playing his first international tournament this year; in fact the last competition he participated in was the 2012 Asian Olympic Qualifying Boxing Tournament in Astana, Kazakhstan in April 2012. He managed to bag the bronze medal at the event, however did not qualify for the London Olympics. But the break has in no ways slowed down the burly 25 year old; he was seen in full flurry on Friday against the Seychelles boxer. His heavy hitting uppercuts and jabs did a lot of damage and put Keddy on the back foot right from the very beginning. Manpreet dominated the bout from the start to the finish and went on to make his place in the pre-quarter finals by virtue of a unanimous decision.
Singh will look to carry on the good form in the next round as well, but will have his task cut out as he takes on the World number 1, Teymur Mammadov of Azerbaijan on Monday (21 Oct 2013). Teymur is the 2012 London Olympic Bronze Medal winner and the reigning European Champion; he also won the silver medal at 2011 WC.
The evening session of play later today will see two time Asian Championship Bronze Medal winner Manoj Kumar (64kg) lock horns with Fatih Keles of Turkey, who is the reigning European Champion in the light weight division.