BAKU (AZERBAIJAN), June 20: Commonwealth Games silver-medallist L Devendro Singh (49kg) stormed into the quarterfinal, while the experienced Manoj Kumar (64kg) entered the last-16 stage of the International Boxing Association�s World Olympic Qualification tournament after notching up comprehensive victories here.
Fourth seed Devendro, who got an opening round bye, defeated Argentina�s Leandro Blanc 3-0 in a lop-sided contest, while former Commonwealth Games gold-medallist Manoj upstaged second seed Mohamed Eslam Ahmed Aly of Egypt with a dominant 3-0 show.
Devendro, also an Asian silver-medallist, will tomorrow be up against South Africa�s Sibusiso Bandla, who defeated Korea�s Lee Yechan in his prequarterfinal bout. The 23-year-old Indian has to make the final to book himself a berth in the Olympic Games.
�Devendro used his right straights and left hook punches in brilliant combination. His uppercut was also very good and precise. In the second round, he somehow twisted his foot but managed to handle the situation on his own. He was brilliant in all three rounds and won the bout unanimously,� national coach Gurbax Singh Sandhu told PTI.
Manoj, on the other hand, will take on Bulgaria�s Ayrin Smetov Ismetov in his pre-quarterfinal bout tomorrow after upstaging a more fancied rival. Manoj, also a former Asian bronze-medallist, will be assured of an Olympic spot if he makes the semifinals of the ongoing event. � PTI