The Women’s Boxing Championships is all set to be held from December 4 to 18 in Istanbul, Turkey. The Boxing Federation of India (BFI) will send a full-fledged squad to the competition under long-serving national youth coach Bhaskar Bhatt.
The 56-year-old, who hails from Uttarakhand, has been working with the youth since 2017. He was an assistant coach in the senior women’s camp from 2005 to 2012. He went on a hiatus between 2012 and 2017 to spend time with his family after his daughter completed schooling.
India will be without their veteran boxer and six-time world champion Mary Kom. In her absence, Tokyo Olympic bronze medalist Lovlina Borgohain will lead a squad consisting of Olympians Simranjit Kaur and Pooja Rani.
Lovlina was given direct entry by the BFI apropos her bronze medal performance at the Olympics. However, she has not been challenged by national title holder in her weight class Arundhati Choudhary, who has moved to Delhi HC seeking trial against the Assamese boxer.
The BFI has said gold medalists in all weight divisions except Lovlina’s will represent India.
The women’s boxing world championship will compromise of new weight categories added by AIBA i.e. 50kg and 70kg, taking the total to 12 weight categories.
However, the International Boxing Association (AIBA) is keeping a close watch on the COVID-19 situation in the host country.
The world body is in touch with the National Federations (NFs), asking them for recommendations on new venues in case the the upcoming boxing world championships gets postponed.
"We always consult with NFs. COVID-19 statistics are worsening [in Turkey] and one of our goals is to protect athletes. We sent letters to all NFs to hear their recommendations because our main goal is to protect our athletes. If NFs recommend that, we might postpone the Championships to March 2022,” said AIBA president Umar Kremlev during a press briefing.
Last week, Turkey recorded more than 28,000 new cases of COVID-19 on average.
The last women’s boxing world championships was held in Ulan-Ude in Russia in 2019.
Initially, the competition was to be held in Kielce in Poland, alongside the Boxing Youth Men's Championships. But it was postponed due to COVID-19, while the youth event continued as planned.
Prize money for Women’s Boxing World Championship
The prize for the first place is $100,000. The silver and both bronze medalists in each weight category, on the other hand, will get richer by $25,000. Prize money for the medalist is exactly the same as for the men’s world championships.
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