New Delhi: IOS Boxing Promotions on Wednesday announced the opponents of Olympian Akhil Kumar and Jitender Kumar who will make their pro-boxing debut at the ‘Battleground Asia’ on 5th August 2017.
The knockout king Vijender Singh headlines a quality packed card that also features debut of Beijing Olympic quarterfinalists Akhil Kumar and Jitender Kumar. This will be the first time the Beijing Olympians from India Akhil Kumar, Vijender Singh and Jitender Kumar will be seen in the same event after 9 years and that too in the pro-boxing circuit.
Neerav Tomar, Promoter, IOS Boxing Promotions, said, “This is one of the biggest boxing spectacles that the Indian audience will see, featuring the most experienced boxers that our country has. Battleground Asia has an impactful fight card, which will be a treat for all the boxing lovers to watch.”
Commonwealth Games 2006 Gold medalist and Beijing Olympics Quarterfinalist boxer Akhil Kumar, who spearheaded the Indian boxing contingent at numerous international tournaments for years, including World Cup (2008) where he won a bronze medal, Commonwealth Federation Boxing Championship (2005) where he grabbed another gold medal and Asian Championship (2007) where he won a bronze medal is all set to begin his professional-boxing journey on 5th August in Mumbai. The most experienced boxer has represented country in nearly 250 bouts during his amateur career.
The 36-year-old Haryana lad Akhil Kumar will face experienced Ty Gilchrist of Australia in a 4 round, Junior Welterweight (63 Kgs) contest. Ty Gilchrist made his debut in the year 2010 and has played 13 bouts since then with a total of 6 wins, including 2 KO wins. Gilchrist has fought 68 rounds, he definitely holds a great record in pro-boxing as compared to our star boxer who is just entering into the world of pro-boxing.
A confident Ty Gilchrist spoke on Akhil’s debut, “Akhil was a very good amateur boxer but professional boxing is a lot different. I’ve had some good tough fights in the pro circuit and Akhil has never experienced what it's like going into deep water with little gloves. I believe my 13 fights as a pro will be all the difference when push comes to shove.”
On fighting Ty Gilchrist, Akhil said, “Yes, he is more experienced than me, but that does not make any difference to me. It’s my debut and all I am concentrating on right now is training hard so that I put up a good show. From last six months, I have been training very hard including working on my fitness and sharpening my skills. Also, I am working on improving my technique as per the requirements of professional boxing and remembering my favorite punches as well. It’s great that he is experienced, people will enjoy our fight and I like challenges.”
Another boxer from Haryana, Jitender Kumar is all set to make his debut in the pro boxing with Akhil Kumar. The 28-year old Bhiwani boxer who won bronze medal in Commonwealth Games 2006 is currently serving as deputy superintendent in Haryana Police. His achievements range from grabbing a bronze medal in the World Cup 2009, to another bronze in the Asian Championship 2007.
Jitender Kumar will make his pro debut against Thailand’s Thanet Likhitkamporn. Thanet is comparatively new to the pro-boxing circuit having made his debut earlier this year he has fought only 1 bout which did not result in his favour, he has played 3 rounds so far. Jitender Kumar will take on Thanet in the Lightweight (61 Kgs) 4 round contest.
Thanet Likhitkamporn spoke on his, “This will be the first time I am fighting in India, I am excited for this bout. My opponent Jitender is making his debut, we are going to have a good fight, I hope the audience enjoys our bout.”
Jitender Kumar looked calm and composed while commenting on his opponent, “Debut in pro boxing will be a new beginning for me, I am working really hard to improve my technique and gain physical fitness. I am not scared of my opponent. I know I am training well, so I am confident of winning my debut fight”.