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News
-PTI
Sri Lanka end 60-year wait

Manju Wanniarachchi guaranteed Sri Lanka their first Commonwealth Games Boxing medal in 60 years, while England's Callum Smith made sure of a third medal in the fighting family on Saturday.
 
Smith outpointed Scotland's Aston Brown 4-0 to storm into the Welterweight semi-finals, emulating brothers Paul (boxing Silver in 2002) and Stephen (Gold in 2006) in the process.
 
"That's three medals in the family now and there aren’t many families that can say they've done that. That's the pressure off a bit, but I didn't come for Bronze," said Smith.
    
Sri Lankan Wanniarachchi, 30, made sure of the medal when he defeated Kenya's Nicholas Okoth to move into the Bantamweight semi-finals.  "This is Sri Lanka's first Bboxing medal since 1950, so this is great for us. It is historic," said manager Dian Gomes. "Wanniarachchi has come a long way. In the 2006 Commonwealth Games, he lost in the quarter-finals. So finally he is among medals for his country."

Wanniarachchi, who lost in the final of the Commonwealth Championships to England's Iain Weaver earlier this year, was virtually speechless. "I am so happy that I am not able to explain anything. I will give my best in the next bout."

He takes on Botswana's Tirafalo Seoko, who beat Namibia's Sakaria Lukas.

"I picked up the pace (scoring eight points in the third and final round), but my opponent didn't have many weak points," said Lukas.
    
The other Bantamweight semi-final will be contested between Sean McGoldrick of Wales and Louis Julie of Mauritius.  "I am really chuffed. I can't believe it and I'm still smiling," McGoldrick said after getting the better of Northern Ireland's Tyrone McCullagh 4-3 on points. "It was really hard in the end. I just need to make sure I move around a lot and try to be a difficult target. I have to take my time and pick up points gradually."
 
McCullagh conceded he did not box well. "Maybe I didn't deserve to go through, but neither did he. I don't know where he scored four points."

Meanwhile, Louis Julie of Mauritius beat India's Akhil Kumar 7-5 to move into the last-four.

Scotland's Josh Taylor and England's Thomas Stalker both advanced to the Lightweight semi-finals. Taylor, who beat Kiribati's Kautoa Roddy 10-0 on points, said, "I didn't think I'd win 10-0, but I did think I'd win."

- PTI

 

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