Bengaluru, March 8: Indian boxer Dinesh Dagar made a fabulous start to his 69kg campaign at the 38th GeeBee Boxing Tournament edging the 2012 London Olympic bronze medallist Evaldas Petrauskas of Lithuania 3-2 to progress into the quarterfinals in Helsinki.
The 23-year-old showed his resilience and determination in ample amounts to get back from a second-round knockdown on his way to the big win. Considering the fact that Petrauskas has a Youth Olympics gold, a Youth World Championships silver medal and a European Championships bronze medal to his name, this was indeed a huge confidence-boosting victory for Dagar.
The young Indian pugilist thus continues his fine form a year after grabbing the silver medal at the India Open. India, however, did not have a flawless start at the opening day of this tournament as Ankit Khatana was blanked 0-5 by England's Luke McCormack in the 64kg category.
Former Asian Boxing Championship gold medallist Shiva Thapa will open his campaign in the 60kg category late on Friday (March 8)
With just four boxers in the 49kg draw, India's Govind Kumar Sahani starts from the semi-finals and is already confirmed of a medal. 2017 Asian Championships silver medallist Sumit Sangwan too will bring home a medal from this tournament after he got a bye into the semi-finals in the 91kg draw that has just 7 boxers.
Around 100 boxers are participating in this tournament from 15 countries as the European swing continues in the boxing calendar.