Tokyo Olympics

Tokyo Olympics: India's Lovlina one win away from winning a boxing medal

Filed on July 27, 2021
Germany's Nadine Apetz (left) and India's Lovlina Borgohain fight during their women's 69kg match at the Tokyo Olympics on Tuesday. (AFP)

The Assam youngster's win over Apetz earned her a quarterfinal clash with Chinese Taipei's Chen

Indian boxer Lovlina Borgohain (69kg) advanced to the quarterfinals on her Olympic debut, defeating German veteran Nadine Apetz in a closely-fought last-16 stage bout on Tuesday.

Borgohain, the lone Indian boxer in action on the day, prevailed 3-2 over her rival. Both the boxers were making their Games debut and the Indian became the first from her nine-strong team to make the quarterfinal stage.

The 23-year-old Lovlina showed great poise in a tense contest to triumph by the thinnest of margins. She claimed all the three rounds on split points.

The 35-year-old Apetz was the first German woman to qualify for a boxing event at the Olympics and also a two-time world championship bronze-medallist and a former European champion.

Borgohain is a two-time World and Asian championships bronze-medallist. She will next face Chinese Taipei's Nien-Chin Chen, who is seeded fourth and a former world champion, on July 30. A win in that bout would assure Borgohain of at least a bronze medal.

Chen was also a silver-medallist at the 2019 Asian Championships and defeated Italy's Angela Carini 3-2 in her pre-quarterfinal bout.

The Indian youngster from Assam was the aggressor in the opening round before she changed strategy to play the waiting game, drawing Apetz in to punish her on counter-attack.

Borgohain relied mostly on her left hooks to keep the slender edge.

Apetz is a pioneering name in German boxing. She is pursuing a PhD in neuroscience, but took a one-year break to prepare for the Olympics.

Apetz made the Games cut after reaching the semifinals of the European Qualification Tournament last year.

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