Kavinder Singh Bisht (56kg) struck gold while Shiva Thapa (60kg) and three others claimed silver medals to end a fine Indian campaign at the 38th GeeBee Boxing Tournament in Helsinki, Finland on Sunday.
Signing off with silver medals were three-time Asian medallist Shiva Thapa (60kg), rookie Govind Sahani (49kg), Commonwealth Games bronze-medallist Mohammed Hussamuddin (56kg) and Dinesh Dagar (69kg).
In a rare all-Indian final, a gritty Bisht was up against Commonwealth Games bronze-medallist Hussamuddin in the 56kg summit clash. Both the boxers are from the Services Sports Control Board (SSCB) and the familiarity with each others’ techniques was apparent in the intense bout. But it proved to be Bisht’s day and the Navyman overcame a cut sustained above his right eye in the final round to emerge triumphant against his Army rival.
The boxer from Uttarakhand is a world championship quarterfinalist in the flyweight category and this was his maiden international gold after making the jump to bantamweight.
Sahani started off strongly against Thailand’s Thitisan Panmod in his summit showdown, clinching the opening round unanimously. However, Panmod found favour with a majority of the judges in the next two rounds and the messy bout ended 3-2 in the flamboyant Thai boxer’s name.
Thapa (60kg), a three-time Asian medallist besides being a former bronze-winner at the world championships, lost 1-4 to local favourite Arslan Khataev. In an intense battle, Thapa claimed the final round honours but the judges ruled the first two rounds in favour of Khataev.
Dagar, a silver-medallist from last year’s India Open, was up against Commonwealth Games gold-medallist England Pat McCormack in the finals. The Indian entered the bout with a heavily swollen left eye due to an injury sustained in the semifinals.
McCormack, also a two-time European silver-medallist, was expectedly the more aggressive of the two boxers. But to Dagar’s credit, he fought hard and withstood three eight counts before the referee ended the contest a few seconds into the third round.
Ending with bronze medals after semifinal losses were Sumit Sangwan (91kg), former youth world champion Sachin Siwach (52kg) and Naveen Kumar (+91kg).