New Delhi: The disappointment continued for Indian boxers at the World Championships with Asian bronze medallist Jitender Kumar being disqualified during his bantam weight (54kg) opening round in Milan, Italy on Wednesday.
Up against old nemesis and sixth seed Yunusov Anvar of Tajikistan, Jitender was disaqualified after being given the mandatory three warnings for three different offences.
The 22-year-old Indian, who created a flutter last year by making the quarterfinals of Beijing Olympics, was first warned for clinching his opponent in the opening minute of the eventful bout.
The second warning came in the next round when he was penalised for "pushing and downing" Anvar.
The third one, that led to his disaqualification, was given in the deciding round for a right upper cut. Jitender was trailing 7-17 when the referee disqualified him.
"It's heartbreaking. It's difficult to keep your composure once you have been warned. I am very disappointed," Jitender told PTI from Milan.
Anvar has been Jitender's nemesis even in the fly weight (51kg) division and had beaten him in the quarterfinals of the inaugural President's Cup last year in June.
Like Jitender, Anvar is also a Beijing Olympics quarterfinalist and jumped a division to bantam weight this year almost around the same time the Indian made the change.
He beat Jitender as recently as in May during a training-cum-competition event in Kazakhstan.
With Jitender's ouster, three Indians have exited the blue-ribbon event in the very first round.
Earlier, Asian champion Suranjoy Singh (51kg) and Manoj Kumar (64kg) lost close bouts to bow out of the event.
The Indian boxing team's assistant coach Jaidev Bisht, who was conferred the prestigious Dronacharya award this year, said the disqualification stunned the entire team.
"We were shocked because getting a warning as early as in the first minute was unexpected. No caution was given to Jitender before being warned and we are very disappointed," Bisht said.
"He lost his focus thereafter and couldn't concentrate," Bisht, who was at ringside during the bout, added.