13 Sep 2021, New Delhi
Boxer Sagar Narwat won the WBC Asian Boxing Council Continental Title in the Super Welterweight division by defeating Rahul Kumar by a Unanimous Decision from all 3 judges after 8 rounds of boxing.
The main event of “The Punch 7” promoted by Boxing Promoter Arif Khan and Sports Oodles was a championship fight for the vacant WBC Asian Boxing Council’s Continental title in the Super Welter Weight division. The 2 challengers for the honors were Faridabad based Sagar Narwat and Delhi based Rahul Kumar.
Prior to this fight, Sagar Narwat had an enviable fight record of 12 Wins -1 loss- 1 draw in his previous 14 pro boxing bouts. Rahul Kumar had a record of 7 Wins – 4 Losses – 1 draw in his previous 12 bouts.
Sagar Narwat had a better win record and was also ranked No 1 in the first ever WBC India Rankings released in August 2021.
A win at “The Punch 7” boxing fight night would have consolidated his position as India’s no 1 Super welterweight boxer in addition to being crowned the continental champion by the WBC Asian Boxing Council.
4 Ring officials were nominated by WBC India for the title fight. Referee Manoj Panwar from Delhi and Judges Ajay Salvi from Mumbai, Rahul Sharma from New Delhi and Satyakam Sharma from Jammu.
The powerfully built Sagar Narwat dominated the opening proceedings with clean punch combinations against the leaner and slight taller Rahul Kumar.
It was evident that Rahul was also ready for the fight and he looked to match Sagar Narwat punch for punch. Narwat, controlled most of the fight as well as the ring in the this round. All 3 Judges scored 10 – 9 in favour of Sagar Narwat.
The 2nd round saw an aggressive approach from both boxers. Both boxers were looking to score points and win the early rounds. Sagar Narwat, was moving with a ferocity and composure of a boxer in his prime while, Rahul played with a counter attacking strategy.
Narwat relied mainly on hooks and uppercuts to Rahul’s chin. A lot of the punches found its mark. It was a surprise to see Rahul still standing after these initial exchanges between the boxers. Rahul, however got better and more composed as the round went on with his own counterattacking punches which caught Narwat unawares on more than a few occasions. The momentum was building and both fighters were having a go at each other.
All 3 judges scored 10 -9 in the round in favour of Sagar Narwat.
Sagar Narwat came into the 3rd round as a man possessed and really wanted to finish the fight in this round. His punches were piercing through Rahul Kumar’s defences. It was a surprise to see Rahul still standing at the end of the round.
Rahul absorbed all the punches that were thrown at him and continued to counterattack when the opportunity arose. Rahul again became more composed as the round went on.
All 3 judges scored the 3rd round 10 – 9 in favour of Sagar Narwat.
At the beginning of the 4th round, there was a clear change in strategy from Sagar Narwat. Sagar toned down the aggression he was showing in the beginning of the first 3 rounds. He focused more on punching the body and Rahul was wincing in pain after too many body blows.
There was an instance in the 1st minute of the 4th round, wherein both boxers were in a clinch with each other. The Referee, Manoj Panwar had to break the clinch Rahul seemed to come out of the clinch holding his right shoulder expressing a discomfort and pain. This was a much more composed round from both boxers.
2 Judges scored the round 10 – 9 in favour of Sagar Narwat and 1 judge scored 10 – 9 in favour of Rahul Kumar.
This bout was slowly turning into a classic to be stored away for eternity in history. Both boxers, seemed to pull another level of their individual personas into this fight from the 5th round.
Sagar Narwat was still out-punching Rahul Kumar with hard hooks and straight Jabs. Rahul, however continued to give back at-least a couple of quick counterpunches every-time Sagar Narwat was retreating after an attack. The intensity from both boxers did not drop even once during the entire round and both men looked like warriors taking on each other in a battlefield.
All 3 judges scored the round 10 – 9 in favour of Sagar Narwat
The 6th round continued to enthral. Both boxers were in the mood to let the intensity continue. Sagar Narwat ‘s work rate and punches were slower but every blow that landed on Rahul were making a huge impact. This fight was definitely going to be decided on points scored by the Judges on their scorecards.
Rahul and his corner were aware that Sagar Narwat was ahead on points. Rahul did not try anything expansive, he stuck to his strategy of counters with a hope to catch Sagar Narwat on the off chance that one sweet blow could get him an unlikely win.
All 3 Judges scored the round 10- 9 in favour of Sagar Narwat
Rahul’s shoulder problems seemed to have cropped up again and every-time both boxers were in a clinch, Narwat was able to take advantage. Rahul was wincing with pain. This was and example of good quality close combat boxing with everything on the table for the winner.
Sagar Narwat was going for the victory with every advantage he could muster.
All 3 Judges scored the round 10 – 9 in favour of Sagar Narwat.
We were now into the final round of the WBC Asian Boxing Council Continental Title fight in the Super welter weight division. Sagar Narwat was clearly ahead on points and Rahul had a severe shoulder discomfort that could rue his chances at winning the title. It was all or nothing for Rahul now.
Sagar Narwat was looking to fight on the inside while Rahul was trying to maintain distance so as to avoid going into a clinch with his shoulder in a precarious situation.
With 1 minute to go in the round, both boxers went at each other with the last bit of energy they had. The shoulder pain was now seemingly unbearable for Rahul but he held on.
All 3 judges scored the round 10 – 9 in favour of Sagar Narwat who was the clear winner.
At the end it was a good Unanimous Decision victory for Sagar Narwat to win the WBC Asian Boxing Council Continental Super Welterweight title in front of his home crowd.