Eight pugilists will represent India at the Asian Boxing Championships to be held at Incheon in South Korea from August 3-13.
The tournament will help the Indians to gear up for the forthcoming World Championships, which will be a qualifying tournament for the 2012 London Olympics. The World Championships will be held at Baku, Azerbaijan, September 22-October 10.
Coach Jaidev Bisht feels the Asian meet will be a good opportunity for Indian boxers to prepare for the World Championships. The team is currently practicing at NIS Patiala.
"I won't be surprised if some of the countries send a second string team to participate in the tournament with the first qualifying event round the corner. This competition will allow us to further assess our pugilists; the extra work put in on their strengths and weaknesses in the run up to the qualifying events, will make the difference," said Bisht.
Olympian Dinesh Kumar in light-heavyweight category will spearhead the Indian attack at the Asian Championships.
Dinesh who bagged a silver medal in the 2010 Asian Games would be making his second appearance at the international stage. The 22-year-old, who lost in the quarter-final of the Giraldo Cordova Cardin meet in Cuba earlier this year, is looking to make amends and get back to winning ways.
"Cuba was my first International tournament after a long break. We have been training very hard for the last few months and I am confident of a good showing at the championships," he said.
Besides Dinesh, Paramjeet Samota, a Commonwealth Games gold medallist and a bronze medallist at the Asian Games, will be vying for top honours in the +91kg.
Squad: Amandeep Singh (Light Fly Weight, 49kg), Santosh Harijan (Fly Weight, 52kg), Shiva Thapa (Bantam Weight, 56kg), Jai Bhagwan (Light Weight, 60kg), Balwinder Beniwal (Light Welter Weight, 64kg), Mandeep Singh Jangra (Welter Weight, 69kg), Kuldeep Singh (Middle Weight, 75kg), Dinesh Kumar (Light Heavy Weight, 81kg), Paramjeet Samota (Heavy Weight, 91kg), Arun Hooda (Super Heavy Weight, +91kg).
Support Staff: B.I. Fernandez (coach), Jagdish Malik (coach), Ramanand (coach), Abhishek (Doctor), Vaibhav Patil (physiotherapist), Bhupender Singh (manager).