On the opening day of the 73rd Strandja Memorial Boxing Tournament in Sofia, Bulgaria, India's Sumit put on a power-packed display to make a fantastic start to his campaign, outclassing Dzhambulat Bizhamov, the silver medallist from the 2021 World Championships, to take him to the next round.
Sumit, the reigning national champion, put up a faultless performance in his only senior international event, winning 5-0 over his Russian opponent in the 75kg opening round. In the second round, the Indian will play Oleksandr Khyzhniak of Ukraine.
Meanwhile, Narender Berwal (+92kg), Varinder Singh (60kg), and Lakshya Chahar (86kg) all lost their first-round fights and were eliminated. Narender was defeated by Ayoub Ghadfa Drissi of Spain, while Varinder and Chahar were defeated by Artur Subkhankulov and Sharabutdin Ataev of Russia, respectively, by a score of 0-5 and 1-4.
Four Indian fighters will begin their campaigns on the second day of Europe's oldest international boxing event.
In the 54kg preliminary round, Shiksha will square off against Kazakhstan's Dina Zholaman, the defending Asian champion. The other two Indian ladies competing on Day 2 are Nitu (48kg) and Anamika (50kg).
In the 67kg second round battle, Akash Sangwan, who had a bye in the first round, will face German pugilist Deniel Krotter late Monday night.
Over 450 boxers from 36 countries across the world are competing in the famous competition, which runs through February 27. Strong boxing nations such as Kazakhstan, Italy, Russia, and France are among the participants.
The competition, which is the inaugural from the Golden Belt Series and also a trial event for the International Boxing Association's World Boxing Tour format, has a 17-member Indian contingent, comprising seven men and ten women. This is also Indian boxers' first exposure tour of the year.