The Boxing Federation of India (BFI) has decided to appoint Army Sports Institute’s Narender Rana as the head coach of the men’s boxing team. The 49-year-old coach will replace CA Kuttappa ahead of this month’s world championships.
A former Asian Boxing Championship bronze-medallist and four-time national boxing champion, Narender Rana has been a seasoned coach with the Services Sports Control Board (SSCB).
He has coached world championship medallists Amit Panghal and Manish Kaushik at different stages of their careers.
Narender Rana is based at the Army Sports Institute (ASI), Pune. The ASI has been credited with discovering stars like Vikas Krishnan, Shiva Thapa, M Suranjoy Singh and L Devendro Singh among others.
“Yes, Mr Rana will take over from me. I remain a part of the coaching staff although not as chief coach,” CA Kuttappa was quoted by PTI as saying.
Kuttappa was appointed as the men’s boxing team head coach in 2018. He is a Dronacharya awardee and has been part of the support staff during some major milestones in Indian boxing history, including the 2008 Beijing Olympics bronze won by Vijender Singh.
Santiago Nieve’s tenure with Boxing Federation of India set to end
The tenure of High Performance Director Santiago Nieva is also set to end. The Italian was appointed in 2017 and has been granted an extension until the world championships to ensure continuity.
Women’s boxing team’s High Performance Director Raffaele Bergamasco has already departed after not being given an extension on his contract.
Meanwhile, the women’s head coach Mohd. Ali Qamar could also be replaced.
The world boxing championship will begin on October 24 in Belgrade, Serbia. India will send a full-squad which will also feature Asian medallists Deepak Kumar (51kg), Shiva Thapa (63.5kg) and Sanjeet (92kg).
However, the preparatory camp for the men’s boxing team is yet to begin. The team will depart on October 20.