M C Mary Kom advancing to semifinals of 69th Strandja Memorial

Vastavam web: Five-time world champion M C Mary Kom (48kg) today assured herself of a third successive international medal by advancing to the semifinals of the 69th Strandja Memorial Boxing Tournament for men and women here today.The 35-year-old, who came here on the back of gold medals at the Asian Championships and the India Open, defeated old nemesis Steluta Duta of Romania in her quarterfinal contest.Clashing after a considerable gap, the two boxers were locked in a fierce exchange of blows but Mary Kom managed to edge past by keeping her distance and not allowing the Romanian a clear shot for most of the bout.

The competitiveness, however, did not come in the way of mutual respect as the two embraced each other warmly at the end of the contest.India are assured of four medals so far in the tournament courtesy women boxers — Seema Punia (+81kg), Saweety Boora (75kg), Mena Kumari Devi (54kg) and Bhagyabati Kachari (81kg).