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Shiva Thapa suffers shock defeat in 64kg final, settles for silver

DUBAI: Indian pugilist Shiva Thapa suffered a shock defeat in the Asian Boxing Championships on Monday after he lost to Baatarsukh Chinzorig in the men’s 64 kg final in Dubai.

The Mongolian fighter was proclaimed the winner by a 3-2 split decision, which caused some consternation in the crowd.

When Thapa advanced to the semi-finals of the current edition, he had already established himself as the most successful male Indian boxer in the tournament’s history.

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The 27-year-old started his Asian Boxing career with a gold medal at the 2013 Championships, then a bronze in 2015, a silver in 2017 and another bronze in 2019.

Thapa’s second silver medal at the Asian Boxing Championships came only minutes after India’s Amit Panghal lost a 3-2 split decision in the men’s 52kg final to Uzbekistan’s reigning Olympic and world champion Shakhobidin Zoirov.

The Indian boxing team has filed an official protest against Panghal’s decision, but it’s unclear whether they’ll do so following Thapa’s loss.

By capturing an astounding 17 medals so far, the Indian delegation has already assured their best-ever performance, surpassing the previous high of 13 medals (2 gold, 4 silver and 7 bronze).

Assam’s chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma also congratulated Thapa on Twitter and wrote, “Punch of pride! Heartiest congratulations to @shivathapa on bagging the Silver medal at #AsianBoxingChampionships. We are all very proud of your excelling in the rings, and certain that this is one among the many more glories that shall follow. May you continue to shine.”

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