Former Asian silver-medallist Sonia Lather (57kg) is the only Indian boxer to have survived so far at the AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships at Astana, Kazakhstan. She beat Poland’s Aneta Rygielska 3-0 to make it to the semi-finals of the tournament and has ensured a medal for the country. With some fine footwork initially, Sonia unsettled her opponent in the opening two rounds, pulling some effective jabs. Rygielska then struggled in the final two rounds, and was brought to her knees in the final few seconds.
India’s hope to get a Rio berth in the three Olympic categories of 51kg, 60kg and 75kg were washed out earlier in the tournament with Mary Kom, and Sarita Devi and Pooja Rani, all having bowed out. In the non-Olympic categories, previous edition’s silver-medallist Sarjubala Devi (48kg), former junior champion Nikhat Zareen (54kg), Saweety (81kg) and Seema Poonia (+81kg) had there fair chances, but couldn’t save the day.
In the next match, Sonia will now face Italian Alessia Mesiano, who has defeated Russian Viktoriia Kuleshova in her quarterfinal bout in a 2:0 triumph.
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