Nitu Ganghas was crowned world champion after beating Mongolian Lutsaikhan Altantsetseg in the 45-48kg minimum weight class final at the 2023 IBA Women’s World Boxing Championships in New Delhi on Saturday.
Nitu defeated Lutsaikhan via unanimous decision (5-0) to cap off a dominating display.
In the first round, both boxers ran out of their corners, trying to seize the lead early on. However, it was Nitu who struck first. They then traded a few blows before Nitu was dropped by Lutsaikhan in the first thirty seconds.
A flurry of wild punches from Lutsaikhan was easily parried by a rebound from Nitu before the Indian landed a pair of right-arm jabs and two solid left-hand hooks. However, late in the round, Lutsaikhan connected with a strong hook; but it was not enough to convince the judges and Nitu won the round 5-0.
Round 2 started with Lutsaikhan on the front foot, needing to land a few punches, but Nitu danced around him and kept his distance, until he went for a wild jab that missed completely. Nitu lost his balance and Lutsaikhan capitalized, throwing a few punches in the ensuing exchanges. Nitu received a yellow card towards the end of the round, meaning he had to be careful in the last round. At the end of round 2, Nitu was leading 3-2.
Lutsaikhan knew he had to land a lot more in the final round, but his aggression left holes in his defense, allowing Nitu to connect several times. Nitu landed two hooks in the last ten seconds of the fight and his dominance was reflected on the scoreboard.
Earlier in the tournament, Nitu had beaten defending Asian champion Alua Balkibekova of Kazakhstan, 5-2 in the semifinal. This had been a rematch of last year’s World Championship quarterfinals in the 48kg category. Having won all of her previous RSC (Referee Stopped Contest) matches, Balkibekova had been a tough test. Nitu had been on the defensive in the first round, but she remained calm and this composure allowed him to adapt her full aggression, leading her to win the remaining two rounds of the fight. At the time, she had been the first Indian to reach the final at these championships.