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The flyweight boxers were the first in the ring at the 2016 AIBA Women’s World Championships in Astana on Thursday afternoon, knowing that successfully carving a path through to the semi-finals would guarantee them a place at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

Hungarian Katalin Ancsin and Belarusian Yana Burym won the day’s first bouts in the Barys Arena, before India’s London 2012 bronze medallist Mary Kom got her campaign off to a winning start, despite being made to work hard by the tall Swede Juliana Soderstrom.

“I felt great in the first two rounds against my young opponent, I boxed from a longer distance and knew I could control the contest. I had a few problems in the third but finished well in the fourth. The opening contest is always hard and the last round was really hectic, but I feel I had the clear shots and kept smiling throughout,” said Hungary’s Katalin Ancsin after her win.

France’s Sarah Ourahmoune narrowly came through her first test against Vietnam’s Thi Bang Le, and the talented American Virginia Fuchs won her debut World Championship bout against Brazilian Grazieli Jesus de Souza, setting up a second-round tie against Azerbaijan’s Anna Alimardanova.

The first bout of the middleweight competition saw a win for Germany’s Sarah Scheurich, before Gabon’s Chimene Moulomba shocked AIBA Women’s Youth World Boxing Championships bronze medallist Alina Gadzhiyeva in their light heavyweight contest. It was a first-ever international elite-level bout for Moulomba, which she won by TKO in the second round.