Indian pugilist Deepak (51kg) stunned Tokyo Olympic bronze medallist and 2021 World Champion Saken Bibossinov on Sunday to reach the pre-quarterfinals at the IBA Men’s World Boxing Championships, while Hussamuddin (57kg) also registered a victory to advance to the quarter-finals.

Deepak started the bout slowly and took some time to get into the rhythm of the game but Bibossinov used it to his advantage and landed some punches. The Indian boxer ended the first round strongly and hit his opponent with a flurry of punches but lost by 2-3.

After the second round, Deepak was trailing before mounting a great comeback in the final round. He picked up the pace and moved around swiftly throughout the bout, while hitting his opponent with some hard blows. Deepak evaded the Kazakh boxer’s punches consistently and impressed the judges to win by 5-2 after the decision went to bout review.

Deepak will face Zhang Jiamao of China in his next bout and will look to register another big win in the tournament.

“My target was to play with patience since the start of the bout and gather as many points as I can,” commented Deepak after the victory.

“The first two rounds were tough but I was focused on not losing my patience and waiting for the right moment to attack. Coaches had told me to lure my opponent with the right punch before using my left hook to good effect. It worked as I connect a lot of left hooks to get points. Every bout is important for me and I play every match like it’s a final match for me. I am focused on winning my next bout now.”

On the other hand, Hussamuddin faced Russia’s Savvin Eduard in the pre-quarters. The Indian pugilist dominated the bout from the start and never gave any chance of a comeback to his opponent.

Hussamuddin was quicker than his Russian opponent in the second round as well. In the third round, he kept on counter-punching smartly to register a 5-0 win. He will be up against Bulgaria’s Javier Diaz Ibanez in the quarter-final.

Boxers Sumit (75kg) and Narender (92+kg) lost their respective bouts later in the night. Sumit’s campaign ended in the round of 32 bout against Russia’s Pavel Sosulin after a 0-5 defeat while Narender lost by the same scorelinee against Arzola Lopez of Cuba in the last-16 stage.

The ongoing tournament is witnessing the participation of 538 boxers, including several Olympic medallists, from 107 countries.

Govind (48kg), Sachin (54kg) and Naveen (92kg) will be in action tomorrow. Govind will take on top seed and 2021 World Championships bronze medallist Sakhil Alakhverdovi in the pre-quarter final whereas Sachin will begin his campaign in the round of 32 against Serghei Novac of Modova. Naveen will square off against 2021 World Championships bronze medallist Enmanuel Reyes of Spain in the last-16 stage.