Rohit Tokas stuns Ashish Kumar to reach semis

Baddi: Rohit Tokas (75kg) caused a huge upset as he stunned Asian Championships silver medallist and home favourite Ashish Kumar in the quarter final while the top boxers, led by Sachin Siwach (57kg) and Shiva Thapa (63Kg) comfortably sailed into the semi-finals on the fifth day of the ongoing 4th Elite Men’s National Boxing Championships at the Baddi University of Emerging Sciences and Technology on Tuesday.

Rohit Tokas from the Railways adopted a counter- attacking strategy against his taller opponent from Himachal. He succeeded in landing more punches to unsettle Ashish with a mix of close-range attack. Rohit landed more clear punches in the third round to finally call an upset win with 4-1 margin.

Talking about his big win, last edition gold medalist, Rohit said, “It is my first tournament in the new weight category and defeating a big player is a huge morale booster. I worked a lot on my strength and did a lot of weight training in my preparation ahead of the National. I am glad that my counter-attacking strategy worked today. Hopefully, I will win the gold medal again.”

While 40 bouts being played, Shiva Thapa (63 kg) showed his composure and experience as he breezed past the challenge of Delhi’s Yogesh Tokas 4-0 in a one- sided bout. The World Championships bronze medallist will face Uttar Pradesh’s Abhishek Yadav in the semi-finals.

2016 World Youth Boxing Champion Sachin Siwach (57kg) was fierce and aggressive and did not put a foot wrong in the 5-0 win over Michael Dominic of Telangana. The services boxer will take on Punjab’s Sagar Chand for a place in the finals on Wednesday.

In the bantam weight category, 2018 Commonwealth game bronze medallist Mohammad Hussamuddin, representing Services continued the winning spree, scripting a unanimous victory over Haryana's Neeraj.

Railways Naman Tanwar (91kg) blasting his way past Rajasthan’s Akhil Poonia 5-0 ensured a semi-final berth. Tanwar will be up next against last year’s bronze medallist, Uttarakhand’s Kapil Pokhariya, who trounced Maharashtra’s Mrunal Zarekar 5-0 to reach the semis.

Services boxer PL Prasad (52 kg) was no match for his opponent Sudeep Kumar from Uttar Pradesh who was defeated by a 5:0 verdict.

Chandigarh's Pankaj Chauhan (75kg) reached the semi-finals after getting a walkover in the quarter-final bout against Punjab's Lakhbir Singh. He will face Haryana's Ankit Khatana as he aims to secure his place in the final.