NEW DELHI: The Boxing Federation of India announced Tuesday that a full-strength Indian contingent will participate at the upcoming 2021 ASBC Asian Boxing Championships, which is jointly hosted by BFI and the UAE Boxing Federation.
The matches will be held from May 24 and go on till June 1 in Dubai.
Though the prevailing travel ban had created doubts over participation of Indians in the championships, BFI put in best efforts to ensure its players do not miss the opportunity of participating in the prestigious event.
The national body, which had earlier named the women’s team spearheaded by the six-time world champion Mary Kom, announced the men’s side as well which will be headlined by defending champion Amit Panghal. All the players alongside coaches and support staff are already in the bio-secure bubble.
“Players’ best interest has always been a priority for Boxing Federation of India and now is no different. We are thankful to the UAE government, Indian ambassador to UAE Mr Pavan Kapoor and ASBC president Anas Alotaiba who have helped us in every possible way to secure the team’s travel to Dubai. This is a much-needed competition which is crucial for the final phase of training and preparation for the Olympics,” BFI president Ajay Singh said.
“I would like to take this opportunity to wish all the participating boxers along with the member nations, all the very best,” he further added.
Alongside Asian Games Gold medallist Panghal (52kg), Vikas Krishan (69kg) and Ashish Kumar (75kg) are the other Olympic-bound pugilists who have been named into the men’s side. The other boxers included in the squad are the 2013 Asian Championships gold medallist Shiva Thapa (64kg), Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Mohammad Hussamuddin (56kg), Vinod Tanwar (49kg), Varinder Singh (60kg), Sumit Sangwan (81kg), Sanjeet (91kg) and Narender (+91kg).
The Asian Championships will be the first boxing tournament to take off in Asia, the tournament was initially scheduled to take place in New Delhi. However due to international travel restrictions, the tournament had to be shifted to Dubai. The Indian team is expected to reach Dubai on May 22 and the contingent will be issued visas on their arrival. All the top players and Olympic-bound boxers are participating in the tournament.
$400,000 prize fund
AIBA on Tuesday announced a prize fund of $400,000 for the championships.
The tournament, which was originally planned in India but shifted to Dubai because of the COVID-19 pandemic, begins on May 24. It will feature both the men's women's competitions.
"For the boxers who take first place, both men and women, the award is $10,000. For the second, the prize money is $5,000 and for both Bronze medallists, it is USD 2,500 USD each," the world body announced in a statement.
AIBA president Umar Kremlev said the decision will motivate the boxers to do their best.
"Boxers should receive a reward for their hard work. Not only will money motivate athletes, but also ensure the financial stability of them and their families," he said.
"All we do is for the sake of our boxers, they are our most important persons. I wish all the participants of the Asian Championships to show their best in the ring and stay healthy," he added.
India's challenge will be spearheaded by six-time world champion M C Mary Kom (51kg) and defending gold-medallist Amit Panghal (52kg) among others.
Along with India, Afghanistan, Bahrain, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, South Korea, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Sri Lanka, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan and Yemen are registered to attend the competition.
(Men): Vinod Tanwar (49kg), Amit Panghal (52kg), Mohammad Hussamuddin (56kg), Varinder Singh (60kg), Shiva Thapa (64kg), Vikas Krishan (69kg), Ashish Kumar (75kg), Sumit Sangwan (81kg), Sanjeet (91kg) and Narender (+91kg).
(Women): Monika (48kg), MC Mary Kom (51kg), Sakshi (54kg), Jasmine (57kg), Simranjeet Kaur (60kg), Lalbuatsaihi (64kg), Lovlina Borgohain (69kg), Pooja Rani (75kg), Saweety (81kg) and Anupama (+81kg).