The Asian/Oceanian Boxing Road to Tokyo qualifier taking place in Amman, Jordan, has entered its last phase. Today’s semi-finals saw the best boxers of the continent qualifying for the medals matches to be held tomorrow.
Five Jordanians have already guaranteed Tokyo 2020 Olympic quota places – a record for the country, which had qualified a maximum of two boxers at previous Olympic tournaments. They all reached the last four in their weights, but it was Mohammad ALWADI and Zeyad ISHAISH who managed to further advance to the final, by winning their respective semi-finals today. In the final bouts, next to the medals, they will have a chance to collect important world ranking points and obtain a better seeding for the Olympic tournament.
ALWADI defeated Van Duong NGUYEN of Vietnam, overcoming a loss in the first round to eventually win the semi-final by split decision. He will compete in the men’s feather (52-57kg) final against the current world ranking’s number two, Kazakhstan’s Mirazizbek MIRZAKHAILOV.
“The strategy was to make it a tight fight and beat him by counter-attacking and it worked,” said ALWADI. “I am focused now on gold here and then going on to Tokyo to win there.”
In the men’s welterweight (63-69kg) division, ISHAISH beat World Championship bronze medallist and reigning Asian champion Bobo-Usmon BATUROV of Uzbekistan. Supported by the home crowd, the Jordanian athlete won by split decision, making it to the final match, where he will meet India’s Vikas KIRSHAN, who cleared his bout against seed number two Ablaikhan ZHUSSUPOV of Kazakhstan to qualify.
“I told my son Rashid last night that I will reach the final and become the number one in Asia, so I didn’t want to let him down,” said ISHAISH. “I’ve shown today that I can be the best and that I can win the gold medal for Jordan this summer.”
Kazakhstan’s top seed Vassilly LEVIT upset the Jordan fans crowding the Prince Hamza Hall in Amman, as he beat the older ISHAISH brother, Hussein, in the men’s heavyweight (81-91kg) class. After losing the first round, he fought back in rounds two and three, to advance in the brackets by split decision. In the final match, he will meet Athlete Ambassador and seed number two in this tournament David NYIKA of New Zealand, who secured a spot in the last bout of the tournament by winning against seed number three Sanjar TURSUNOV of Uzbekistan.
In the morning session, reigning world champion and world ranking leader in the women’s featherweight (54-57kg) category, Chinese Taipei’s LIN Yu-Ting, beat Australia’s hope Skye NICOLSON, booking a final face-to-face against Japan’s Sene IRIE, who passed through the semi-finals clearing her bout against South Korea’s IM Aeji by unanimous decision.
In the women’s flyweight (48-51kg) event, India’s hero Mary Kom HMANGTE lost to China’s CHANG Yuan by split decision. The Chinese athlete will meet NAMIKI Tsukimi of Japan, who won the first bout of the afternoon’s session as HUANG Hsiao-Wen of Chinese Taipei abandoned the contest 2:56 minutes into the first round.
Follow the finals live
The Boxing Road to Tokyo Asian/Oceanian qualifying event has attracted 221 athletes (151 men and 70 women) from 35 countries, who have been competing for 63 Olympic quota places in 13 weight categories (eight men’s and five women’s events) since 3 March.
The finals and the last box-offs are taking place on 11 March. Fans can watch the action live on the Olympic Channel, with all the women’s and men’s bouts across all weight categories available with commentary in English, Russian and Hindi. Coverage will be available in all territories worldwide for free at olympicchannel.com and on its apps for mobile and connected TV devices.
News, photos and results will be posted online on the dedicated Amman qualifier page of the Athlete365 Boxing Corner platform. We encourage fans to join the conversation online using the hashtag #Boxing.