By Jake Donovan
The hosting nation for the 2012 London Games is still reeling from the drama produced in last week's thriller which advanced Anthony Ogogo to the quarterfinals.
Ogogo's dramatic double-tiebreaker win over Ievegn Khytrov of Russia kicked off Round of 16 action for the middleweight division on Thursday.
Monday evening saw the charismatic banger become the third fighter from Great Britain to secure medal status after win over Stefan Hartel of Germany.
The outcome came down to Ogogo's busier work rate versus Hartel's cleaner punching from the outside. The judges have been inconsistent throughout the tournament as to which they prefer. On this particular occasion, aggression got the job done as Ogogo was able to repeatedly score with wide left hooks.
Hartel was calm in his demeanor though perhaps a bit too reserved for his own good. The tactic certainly didn't play well on the final scorecards, though at best it can be argued that it should've been closer than a five point margin.
Still, the right fighter won in the end, much to the delight of the partisan crowd. Ogogo now faces Ezquiva Falcao in the semifinals, thanks to the Brazilian's 14-10 win over Zoltan Harcsa of Hungary.
Falcao has impressed throughout the competition and his performance on Monday evening was no exception. Harcsa had few answers for his opponent, never really offering a competitive performance until the final round when Falcao was way up and could afford to coast.
The middleweight is just one of two remaining members left on Team Brazil, the other being his brother Yamaguchi Falcao who fights in light heavyweight quarterfinal action on Wednesday.
Abbos Atoev of Uzbekistan continues to prove true the notion that it's sometimes better to be lucky than to be good. His advancement to the semifinals comes on the strength of a 17-13 verdict over Vijender Singh of India, though he hasn't gained very many fans along the way.
Atoev's very placement in the quarterfinals came under high scrutiny, as many took exception to the scoring in his Round of 16 win over Bogdan Juratoni of Romania. More of the same took place in this bout, as Singh could never fare any better than pulling even after one round.
Singh appeared to have dominated round two, at one point drilling Atoev with the left hook that left the Uzbekistan fighter momentarily dazed. It wasn't enough on this particular night, as Atoev was somehow awarded the round and eventually the fight.
The win makes Atoev the first fighter from the 2012 Uzbekistan boxing squad to advance to the semifinals, with a shot at medal placements in three more weight classes.
Meanwhile, Singh and his Indian teammates haven't been seen quite as favorable in the eyes of the judges as they are down to one remaining participant. Singh is left one win shy of matching his historic run in the 2008 Beijing Games, when he become the first fighter ever from his nation to medal in boxing competition after capturing Olympic bronze.
Awaiting Atoev in the medal round is Ryota Murata of Japan, who rode a late rally all the way to the finish line in a 17-13 win over Adem Kılıççı of Turkey.
The final middleweight bout of the day was nip and tuck throughout, with Kılıççı enjoying a slight lead early on but Murata doing well in holding pace. The fight was anyone's for the taking in the third round, at which point Murata offered a volcanic-like offensive output to surge ahead and pull off the upset.
Murata joins Satoshi Shimizu at the medal podium, with Japan now guaranteed to place in two weight classes. Kılıççı's loss means Turkey is down to just one fighter left in the 2012 London Games.
The middleweight semifinals take place on Friday, August 10.
Middleweights Quarterfinals (Monday, August 6):
Anthony Ogogo (Great Britain) def. Stefan Hartel (Germany), 15-10
Ezquiva Falcao (Brazil) def. Zoltan Harcsa (Hungary), 14-10
Abbos Atoev (Uzbekistan) vs. Vijender Singh (India), 17-13
Ryota Murata (Japan) def. Adem Kılıççı (Turkey), 17-13
Middleweight Semifinals (Medal round - Friday, August 10):
Anthony Ogogo (Great Britain) vs. Ezquiva Falcao (Brazil)
Abbos Atoev (Uzbekistan) vs. Ryota Murata (Japan)
Middleweights - Round of 16 Matchups (Thursday, August 2):
Anthony Ogogo (Great Britain) def. Ievgen Khytrov (Ukraine), 18-18 (double tiebreaker)
Stefan Hartel (Germany) def. Darren O'Neill, 19-12
Zoltan Harcsa (Hungary) def. Mjundjae Kasuto (Namibia), 16-7
Ezquiva Falcao (Brazil) def. Soltan Migitinov (Azerbaijan), 24-11
Abbos Atoev (Uzbekistan) def. Bogdan Juratoni (Romania), 12-10
Vijender Singh (India) def. Terrell Gausha, 16-15
Adem Kılıççı (Turkey) def. Aleksander Drenovak (Serbia), 20-11
Ryota Murata (Japan) def. Abdelmalek Rahou (Algeria), 21-12
Middleweights - Round of 32 Results (Saturday, July 28):
Anthony Ogogo (Great Britain) def. Junior Castillo (Dominican Republic), 13-6
Darren O'Neill (Ireland) def. Muideen Akanji (Nigeria), 15-6
Stefan Hartel (Germany) def. Enrique Collazo (Puerto Rico), 18-10
Mjundjae Kasuto (Namibia) def. Sobirdzhon Inazarov (Tajikistan), 11-8
Zoltan Harcsa (Hungary) def. Jose Espinoza (Venezuela), 16-13
Soltan Migitinov (Azerbaijan) def. Mohamed Hikal (Egypt), 20-12
Abbos Atoev (Uzbekistan) def. Badr-Eddine Haddioui (Morocco) – 11-9
Terrell Gausha (USA) def. Andranik Hakobyan (Armenia) - RSC-3
Vijender Singh (India) def. Danabek Suzhanov (Kazakhstan) - 14-10
Adem Kılıççı (Turkey) def. Nursahat Pazziyev (Turkmenistan) - 14-7
Aleksander Drenovak (Serbia) def. Mario Delgado (Ecuador) - 30-12
Abdelmalek Rahou (Algeria) def. Jesse Ross (Australia), 13-11
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter: @JakeNDaBox
Tags: Amateur Boxing