25-year-old, four-time Asian medallist Shiva Thapa became India's first gold medallist at the President's Cup boxing tournament after getting a walkover in the finals in Astana, Kazakhstan on Saturday.
Thapa was making his international debut in the newly-introduced Olympic category of 63kg. The 25-year-old was to fight Kazakhstan's Zakir Safiullin in the summit clash but to Thapa’s fortune, his opponent pulled out of the final due to an injury. Thapa had lost to Safiullin in the Asian Championship semi-final earlier this year.
The young boxer took to Twitter and expressed his delight after winning the gold. he said that he is really motivated and happy. Read the tweet here:
India’s woman boxer Parveen (60kg) signed off with a silver medal losing her final bout to local boxer Rimma Volosenko.
"The new weight category has been easy to adapt. I have not faced too much difficulty. Obviously, there are challenges of facing boxers who are coming from 64kg, given their power but nothing is impossible," said Thapa.
Thapa didn’t make the cut for the September world championships after facing defeat in the trials to Commonwealth Games silver-winner Manish Kaushik. Thapa had defeated Kyrgyzstan's Argon Kadiribekuulu 4-1 in the last-four stage bout.
India's High-Performance Director Santiago Nieva lauded Thapa’s performance and said that the young lad had a great tournament beating some really fancied opponents. Nieva called Thapa's stint an 'impressive performance'.
Earlier, Sweety Boora (81kg) and Duryodhan Singh Negi (69kg) had ended their campaign with bronze medals following semifinal defeats.