Magomedalieva, Price and Fontijn are medallists at the Tokyo Olympic Games

31 July 2021 News

The eighth day of boxing delivered three further medals for the European continent in the Tokyo Olympic Games. Russian Olympic Committee’s Zenfira Magomedalieva, Netherlands’s Nouchka Fontijn and Great Britain’s Welsh girl Lauren Price achieved these medals at the women’s middleweight (75kg).

Altogether 24 European nations could send boxers to the Olympic Games to Japan where the continent have got 92 tough boxers including 33 women. Many of the European female and male boxers are among the medal and title favourites and title contenders in the Tokyo Olympic Games.

The bout of the day

Spain’s Gabriel Escobar and Bulgaria’s Daniel Asenov achieved the European titles between 2015 and 2019 but the two stars had to meet already in the last 16 of the men’s flyweight (52kg). Escobar defeated Asenov in the final of the Minsk 2019 European Games and the Spaniard knew how to handle the Bulgarian boxer’s aggressive attacks and footwork. Escobar was a hard target and his left-handed hooks were dangerous all the time in the first and second rounds. Asenov proved his very best only in the third round but Escobar had the advantage to get his place to the last eight.

The Round-up

The Russian Olympic Committee’s three boxers won their contests in the seventh day of boxing and their Gabil Mamedov was also in top shape on Day8. The 27-year-old Russian lightweight (63kg) boxer met in the last 16 with Mauritius’ former Commonwealth Games winner veteran Richarno Colin who competes in his third Olympic Games. The Mauritian chosen the right strategy against the attacking Russian but it worked well only in the first round. Mamedov found his best combinations and rhythm in the beginning of the second round which guaranteed his quarter-final place in Tokyo.

Hovhannes Bachkov carried Armenia’s flag in the Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo Olympic Games before the start of the actions. The Armenian lightweight (63kg) boxer won the Kharkiv 2017 EUBC European Boxing Championships and the Minsk 2019 European Games. Bachkov faced in the last 16 with Azerbaijan’s former AIBA World Champion Javid Chalabiyev which was more than a simple preliminary contest. The Azeri boxer began the bout in better rhythm but the favourite Armenian turned up the heat in the beginning of the second round. Bachkov was able to change his previous strategy and bowed out his neighbouring opponent with an emotional performance.

Great Britain’s Lauren Price is the defending AIBA Women’s World Champion at the middleweight (75kg) who also won the European Olympic Boxing Qualifying Event. The Welsh girl knew her quarter-final opponent, Panama’s experienced Atheyna Bylon and kept her full concentration until the final gong. Bylon, who claimed gold at the Jeju 2014 AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships, was taller than Price but she could not use her longer reach due to the Welsh boxer’s amazing physical condition. Price reduced the fighting distance successfully and her tough combinations decided their quarter-final earning a guaranteed medal in the Olympic Games.

Price’s main European rival, Nouchka Fontijn achieved silver medal at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, she won the European Games one-time and the EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships two-times. The 34-year-old Dutch middleweight (75kg) boxer was in top form in the recent eight months and competed high number of preparation events to take her second Olympic medal. Fontijn started slowly in her first contest against Poland’s Elzbieta Wojcik and she made this kind of mistake also in the quarter-finals when she met with Canada’s AMBC American Champion Tammara Thibeault. Fontijn and her coaches knew that for the victory, she has to do more and from the second the Dutch looked better and more punctual. Fontijn made an impressive comeback and her efforts delivered her second Olympic medal after Rio de Janeiro.

Great Britain’s Galal Yafai qualified for his second Olympic Games after Rio de Janeiro and those experiences were highly useful for the 29-year-old flyweight (52kg) boxer. The Commonwealth Games winner English boxer acclimatized to his new weight class successfully in the recent two and half years. Yafai had a super talented opponent, Zambia’s 20-year-old Patrick Chinyemba and after the tough first round, he controlled the second when the referee counted the African boxer. Yafai had not an easy job against the young Zambian but his experiences decided their preliminary contest.

Russian Olympic Committee’s Zenfira Magomedalieva won gold medals in AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships and EUBC European Women’s Boxing Championships but in non-Olympic weight categories. The 34-year-old Russian boxer had a good draw and she used that well enough to secure a medal at the women’s middleweight (75kg). Mozambique’s women’s boxing team developed rapidly in the Olympic cycle but their Adosinda Rady Gramane does not have the same experience level as Magomedalieva. The Russian boxer was better in most of the exchanges and celebrated her split decision success in Tokyo.

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