Neetu Gangas won her first gold medal at the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games in the women’s 48kg final, defeating England’s Demi-Jade Rusta. This is India’s first boxing gold in CWG 2022.
Two-time youth world champion Neetu started the pace aggressively, landing an early jab in her opponent’s face with a left. Resztan tries to close the range but Nitu lands two uppercuts in the clinch. The Indian slipped a bit but recovered and hit a punch towards the end to win the first round 4-1.
Nitu’s dominant left hook came forward in the second round, while Resta struggled to defend her quick combination of punches. The boxing match turns into a mini wrestling match as Neetu and the English boxer fall to the ground. The 21-year-old Indian has won the second round 5-0 to lead 4-1 overall.
Although Reztan got Nitu on the ropes in the third round, the Indian launched two counterattacks that were too quick for the English boxer. Neetu’s range and speed was too much for Reztan, as she battered her opponent with several combinations, basically all but securing herself the gold.
Earlier, Neetu started her CWG campaign by defeating Northern Ireland’s Nicole Clyde in the women’s 48kg quarterfinals. The 21-year-old, who hails from Danana in the Bihiwani district, dominated the first two rounds against Clyde before the fight was abandoned. In her semi-final match against Canada’s Priyanka Dhillon, she was stopped in the third round by referee Neetu.
Making her CWG debut, Neetu had big shoes to fill in the weight category of MC Mary Kom, who had injured herself during the selection trials before the event. “This is just the beginning, I have a long way to go,” Neetu said after the quarterfinal win. “I just listen to my coaches and try to accomplish that in the ring,” she said when asked about her long-term goals.
Strandja Memorial Gold Medal Winner He started boxing in 2012.
Neetu’s father had to quit his job in Chandigarh to support his daughter’s dream after giving up sports. She hopes the medal at the CWG will lead to a financially secure future. “We live in a joint family. My father always stays with me so that he can’t work. As we live in a joint family, his elder brothers take care of all the expenses. We hope this medal will make a big difference,” added Neetu.