Boxers Nitu Ghanghas, Nikhat Zareen and Amit Panghal added to India’s medal tally after winning gold with dominating performances in their respective gold medal bouts while Sagar Ahlawat finished his campaign with a silver at the Commonwealth Games 2022 on Sunday, in Birmingham.
Defeating England’s Demie-Jade Resztan by a 5-0 unanimous decision in the women’s 48 kg category, Nitu became the first gold medallist for India in boxing at the 2022 edition. Following that, experienced campaigner Panghal bettered his silver from the Gold Coast 2018 for a well-earned gold in the men’s 51kg category after defeating England’s Kiaran Macdonald. Nikhat Zareen, added her third gold medal of the year by winning in the women’s 50kg final against Northern Ireland’s Carly McNaul.
This is Nitu’s second gold medal of the year, having won the title at the Strandja Memorial in the women’s 48kg category. The 21-year-old from Dhanana, Haryana produced some brilliant performances in Birmingham.
Her first bout against Northern Ireland’s Nicole Clyde ended with her opponent abandoning the contest in Round 2. It was followed by another ruthless performance from her that saw her win by RSC in the quarterfinal against Canada’s Priyanka Dhillon.
“I want to dedicate the medal to all the citizens of the country. I would like to thank the Sports Authority of India, Boxing Federation of India, all my coaches and my family for their support,” said Nitu after winning the gold.
Doing away with the memories of Tokyo 2020, Panghal stormed through to the final in commanding fashtion, winning all his bouts with a 5-0 unanimous decisions. He impressed since his very first bout against Namri Berry, then beat Scotland’s Lennon Mulligan to continue his winning streak. Although he was challenged well by Patrick Chinyemba of Zambia in the semifinal, he persevered to also win that bout by a unanimous decision.
Meanwhile, Nikhat Zareen continued to impress with her UD winning streak that began at the World Championships and carried on till the final in the Commonwealth Games. In Birmingham, her opening round ended with RSC, while the quarterfinal against Helen Jones of Wales, the semifinal against Savannah Alfia Stubley of England and the final, all ended with 5-0 unanimous decisions.
In the final bout of the Commonwealth Games, Sagar Ahlawat faced England’s Delicious Orie in the men’s +92kg category and lost by a 5-0 UD. After convincing and dominating 5-0 UD wins against Cameroon’s Maxime Yegnong Njieyo, Seychelles’ Keddy Evans Agnes and Nigeria’s Ifeanyi Onyekwere to set up a final against Orie, he was outsmarted by the local boxer.
After taking the first round on all five cards, Orie staged a comeback for the ages to sway all five judges in his favour in the next two rounds. It was a bloody bout that saw Sagar needing medical attention in the final round but he finished his campaign with an impressive silver.
On Saturday, Rohit Tokas (men’s 67kg), Jaismine (women’s 60kg) and Mohammed Hussamuddin (men’s 57kg) all won bronze.