Vijender, Dinesh qualifies for Beijing Olympic

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New Delhi, March 23: Ace Indian boxers Vijender (75 kg category) and Dinesh Kumar (81 kg) have qualified for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games in the Qualifying Tournament in progress at Kazakhstan.

The Indian Amateur Boxing Federation (IABF) secretary general Muralidharan Raja said the boxers made it to the August 8-24 games after reaching the finals in a qualifying tournament in Astana, Kazakhstan. He said, ''in the semi-finals yesterday, Vijender defeated his opponent from Iran by a margin 19-13. Vijender was trailing by one point in the first round, two points in the second round, and one point in the third round. However, in the fourth round he played intelligently to emerge a clear winner by six points.'' ''Dinesh was magnificent as he outscored his opponent from Mongolia in the third round,'' he added.

Vijender will clash with South Korean Cho Deok Jin and Dinesh will meet Ghorbani Mehdi of Iran in the title round in Astana.

Two more Indians - Jitender (51 kg) and Dilbagh Singh (69 kg) - are also in line to qualify for the games.

Jitender lost to Kazakhstan but still has a chance as in 51 kg there will be a play-off for the third place and the winner qualifies for Beijing.

Dilbagh Singh (69 kg) won his semi-final bout against Japan despite a cut that he sustained in the first round. He needs to win the final bout against Turkmenistan as only the gold medalist will qualify.

Manoj (64 kg) and Pravin (+91 kg) lost their semifinal bouts.

UNI

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