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Two from N-E: Boxer Lovlina Borgohain assures 2nd medal for India at Tokyo Olympics

The 23-year-old boxer from Assam, participating in her first Olympic Games, showed great technical acumen as she edged the first round 3-2 and then stamped her authority on the bout by making a clean sweep in the second round.

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New Delhi: Indian boxer Lovlina Borgohain (69kg) Friday assured of medal at the ongoing Tokyo Olympics after she had defeated Chinese Taipei’s Nien-Chin Chen 4-1 to enter the semifinals.

The 23-year-old boxer from Assam, participating in her first Olympic Games, showed great technical acumen as she edged the first round 3-2 and then stamped her authority on the bout by making a clean sweep in the second round.

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The Indian boxer was dominant in the final round too as she won it 4-1 to eventually win by a split decision margin of 4-1.

Lovlina has won two World Championships bronze medals and two Asian Championships bronze medals in the past.

Whatever be the colour of the medal eventually, Lovlina will become the second Indian woman after the legendary Mary Kom to win an Olympic medal. Mary Kom, who had won the bronze medal in the 2012 London Olympics, lost her round of 16 match at Tokyo on Thursday.

Vijender Singh won India’s first ever boxing medal, a bronze, at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Lovlina was aggressive to start with, followed it up with a tremendous counter-attacking game and kept her defence tight in the final three minutes to emerge triumphant against the seasoned opponent from Chinese Taipei.

“She stuck to the plan of counter-attacking and taking advantage of her height. She had tried being aggressive with this girl in the previous bout and lost. So this time, we told her ‘aap khade raho, usko aane do’,” national coach Mohammed Ali Qamar told PTI.

And what a cool mind she displayed, never got excited. Never tried to barge in. She executed the plan to perfection. Had she tried to go on offensive, she would have ended up getting hit,” he said.

The youngster, who was laid low by COVID-19 last year and missed a training trip to Europe because of it, let out a huge scream after the referee raised her hand, pent up emotions finally getting the better of her.

Borgohain started out as a kick boxer before Sports Authority of India’s Padum Boro, while scouting for talent in Assam’s Golaghat district, noticed her.

He introduced her to boxing and she took to it like fish to water, winning a bronze medal in her debut world championship in 2018, following it up with another bronze the next year.

Earlier, Simranjit Kaur (60kg) lost to Thailand’s Sudaporn Seesondee in the pre-quarterfinals to make an early exit from the Games here.

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