Asian Games: Nikhat Zareen advances to semis, books Olympic berth

Nikhat Zareen
Nikhat Zareen reacts after defeating Jordan's Nassar Hanan. Photo: PTI/Gurinder Osan

Hangzhou: Two-time world champion boxer Nikhat Zareen secured a Paris Olympics berth and assured herself of a medal as she cantered to the 50kg semifinals of the Asian Games here on Friday.

Fighting in her third bout of the tournament, Nikhat needed less than three minutes to notch up a facile RSC (referee stops contest) win over Nassar Hanan of Jordan in the quarterfinals.

The reigning Commonwealth Games champion set the tone of the bout early on with a sharp jab. Nikhat continued to dominate with a flurry of accurate combination punches.

Such was her domination that the referee was forced to give the Jordanian pugilist three standing counts before calling off the contest.

World Championship bronze medallist Parveen managed to outplay local favourite Zichun Xu 5-0 to move into the quarterfinals.

Lakshya Chahar, on the other hand, made a first round exit after going down 1-4 to Kyrgyzstan's Omurbek Bekzhigit Uulu in the 80kg Round of 16 bout.

In the women's events, the semifinalists in the 50kg, 54kg, 57kg, and 60kg as well as the finalists in the 66kg and 75kg will qualify for the Paris Olympics.

The gold and silver medallists in each of the seven weight divisions in the men's event will also receive Olympic quotas.

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