Vijender Singh loses to Atoev, settles for bronze

Vijender Singh loses to Atoev, settles for bronze

 India's Vijender Kumar (L), fights against Abbos Atoev, of Uzbekistan, during a men's middleweight 75 kg semifinal boxing match at the World Boxing Championships, in Milan Friday.Vijender settled for a bronze at the World Boxing Championships in Milan, Italy.
The bronze with which he had to be content with after the 3-7 loss to Atoev late last night was Vijender's third successive this year.

But even in defeat, the Olympic bronze medallist scripted history by ending India's medal drought in the elite event.
"Obviously I am a bit disappointed but I am glad that I ended India's medal jinx at this prestigious event," the world number two, who was given the top seeding in Milan, said after the bout.

The 23-year-old went into the bout as favourite, considering that he had beaten Atoev, a former light heavy weight champion, just a couple of months ago at the Asian Championships in China.
Like his previous bouts, Vijender started off cautiously to take a slender 1-0 lead after the first three minutes but things went haywire from there on as Atoev staged an aggressive comeback.

The Uzbek, who fought without a guard, pushed Vijender to the backfoot with some hard-hitting straight jabs. The Indian couldn't land a single scoring punch and was trailing 1-5 at the end of the second round.
"It was not his day. He tried his level best but Atoev was very aggressive but Vijender also gave a good account of himself," national coach Gurbax Singh Sandhu said.

Vijender tried to claw back in the final round and reduced the points gap to 3-5 but an unrelenting Atoev ensured that the Indian could not beyond that.
The last time the Haryana boxer won more than a bronze medal was the Asian Championships in 2007, when he returned with a silver.

He has been settling for bronze medals ever since, starting with the Olympics in Beijing last year.
This year he managed bronze medals at the European Grand Prix in Czech Republic in May and the Asian Championships the next month.
"I have ended two of the biggest jinxes in Indian boxing but I have been settling for bronze medals for a long time. Hopefully, I would end this jinx the next time I compete," he said.

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