Nepal’s Sanil Shahi celebrates with his gold medal after defeating India’s Varinder Singh in the men’s lightweight 60 kg final at the Karate Academy Hall in Satdobato, Lalitpur on Tuesday. Photo: NSC
LALITPUR, Dec 10: Sanil Shahi clinched a gold medal on Tuesday to take the boxing medal tally to three on the final and concluding day of the 13th South Asian Games.
Shahi defeated India’s Varinder Singh in the men’s lightweight 60 kg category final bout at the Karate Academy Hall in Satdobato to give Nepal its third boxing medal of this edition.
It also marks the record highest gold medals for boxing in Nepal’s SAG history, a day after Nepali boxers ended the two-decade-long jinx which saw Minu Gurung and Bhupendra Thapa Magar clinch golds.
Gurung also became the first Nepali female boxer to win a gold medal in the South Asia’s biggest sporting event.
Nepal had won two gold medals each in the first and the eighth SAG—both held in Kathmandu. Since then, no boxers had been able to make the glory until this edition, which is also held at home.
Although the twenty-year wait for the boxing gold ended yesterday, more golds were expected as five boxers entered the ring on the final day.
However, except Shahi, three fell to the Indian opponents as the southern rival almost swept the competition finale.
Mala Rai lost to Pinki Rani in the women’s flyweight (51 kg) category, Punam Rawal suffered defeat against Manju Bamboriya in the women’s light welterweight (64kg) category and Ashish Duwadi was beaten by Narender in the men’s super heavyweight (over 91 kg) category.
Ganesh Pradhan was able to beat the Indian boxer in the semifinals but he too yielded to Sri Lanka’s Rumesh Sandekelum Wanni in the men’s light heavyweight (81 kg) category final.
Winning six finals on the last day, India has claimed 12 golds, three silvers and one bronze in the sport.
In other final bouts, India’s Sonia Lather saw off Sri Lanka’s Krismi Ayoma Lankapurayalage in the women’s featherweight (57 kg) category, India’s Sparsh Kumar defeated Pakistan’s Md Syed Asif in the men’s flyweight (52 kg) category and India’s Vikas Krishan overcame Pakistan’s Gul Zaib in the men’s welterweight (69 kg) category.
Sri Lanka is on the third position on the table with one gold and two silver medals, Pakistan has three silver medals, and Bhutan and Bangladesh have one silver medal each.