Sofia (Bulgaria), February 24: After MC Mary Kom and Seema Poonia booked their berth in the finals on Friday evening, Asian Games gold medalist Vikas Krishnan and fast rising Amit Phangal had to dig deep to enter the finals and inch closer to the gold medal, here at the Strandja Memorial Tournament on Saturday.
Vikas Krishnan had a fairly easy outing against Tuohetaerbieke Tanglatihan of China and he breezed past his Chinese opponent comfortably.
The Asian Games gold medalist showered his combinations on Tanglatihan, while keeping a safe distance when the Chinese launched an attack.
The lanky Chinese pugilist fought hard but Vikas dodged his straight jabs and cruised to an easy victory after the completion of three rounds.
Earlier, in the 49 kg section, Amit Phangal displayed resilience against Russia's Artysh Soyan, as the latter came too close for comfort.
Amit had a tough time landing his jabs and hooks.
However, India's high-performance director Santiago Nieva, seemed to have spotted the Russian's weakness and fed Amit the right information at the end of the second round.
The next round was all about Amit using his nimble feet to turn the tables on his Russian opponent.
He adjusted swiftly to throw quick jabs and marched onto the final of the championship after a close fought semifinal clash.
Next up, fighting for a spot in the finals was Hussamuddin Mohammed who couldn't cope up with Russia's Shakhriyor Akhmedov.
The Russian didn't let Hussamuddin breathe from the word go and kept landing his punches. His deadly punches opened up a cut on the Indian's right eyebrow in the second round, however, Hussamuddin wasn't going to give up without a fight.
In the third round, the referee had to halt the contest twice, so that the wound on Hussamuddin's eye could be tended to.
After six women made it to the semifinals of the oldest boxing tournament in Europe, four of them - Laisharam Sarita Devi (60 kg), Meenakumari Devi Maisnam (54 kg), Bhagyabati Kachari (81 kg) and Saweety Bora (75kg) lost to their respective opponents and had to settle for a bronze.
However, the men's department had an easy day out on Friday evening, as only Manish Panwar (81kg) bowed out of the championship, from all the six men in the quarterfinals. (ANI)