Veteran Indian woman boxer L. Sarita Devi stormed into the quarter-finals of the 60kg category with a 5-0 unanimous verdict over Barbados' Kimberly Gittens at the 21st Commonwealth Games here on Saturday.
Sarita, 36, brought her experience to the fore against the 26-year-old Kimberly. The Indian got identical 30-25 verdicts from each of the five judges.
Sarita, the silver medallist at the 2014 Glasgow CWG, played her trademark counter-attacking game, waiting for the opponent to open up in launching an attack. Kimberly also lacked compactness and composure while defending. Sarita stood in distance, waiting for Kimberly to come to her and initiate attack.
Sarita was quick enough to make the most of the opportunities in landing combination of jabs and hooks. Kimberly's positioning at the moment of defending was also called into question.
After the first round, Sarita had dealt a psychological blow on the opponent, forcing Kimberly to come out with a different strategy. Kimberly opened up less in the second round but Sarita still managed to dominate. The pattern was a left hook followed up by straight punches.
The blows from Sarita were so accurate and stinging that the ring judge even gave a three count to Kimberly to end the contest. But the Barbadian pugilist refused to surrender.
In the final round, Sarita slightly dropped her game but her know-how and tactical acumen were enough to come out convincing winner.
Sarita will take on Anja Stridsman of Australia in the quarter-final.
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