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Defending champion Nikhat Zareen and four-time Asian medallist Shiva Thapa sailed into the quarterfinals of the Strandja Memorial Boxing Tournament at Sofia in Bulgaria on Wednesday.

India's Zareen was declared the winner after her rival Sevda Asenova, a local favourite, abandoned the second-round bout. Asenova was a former gold-medallist at the event, which is into its 71st edition this year. Four-time Asian medallist Shiva Thapa defeated Poland's Pavel Polakovic 5-0 in his last 16 stage clash in the 63kg category. He had received an opening-round bye.

In the men's competition, Duryodhan Singh Negi (69kg) and Mohammed Hussamuddin (57kg) advanced to the second round after winning their respective opening bouts. Both the results were split 1-4 verdicts. More than 30 countries are taking part in the tournament, featuring over 250 boxers. 




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