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Boxing

Women's Boxing World Championships: BFI writes to boycotting nations ahead of tournament

The countries include the USA, Britain, Ireland, Canada, Sweden, Poland, Netherlands, Czech Republic, and Ukraine.

Womens Boxing World Championships: BFI writes to boycotting nations ahead of tournament
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KD Jadhav Indoor Stadium in New Delhi (Source: IBA)

By

PTI

Updated: 24 Feb 2023 4:44 PM GMT

Boxing Federation of India (BFI) is not disheartened by the growing number of countries boycotting the Women's World Championship and has opened a dialogue with these nations to get them to reverse their decision.

International Boxing Association's (IBA) decision to lift the ban on Russian and Belarusian boxers, allowing them to compete under their own flag, against the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) recommendations due to the ongoing war in Ukraine, has led to nine countries boycotting the marquee event scheduled in New Delhi on March 15-26.

The countries include USA, Britain, Ireland, Canada, Sweden, Poland, Netherlands, Czech Republic and Ukraine.

"I don't know why we should even think that it's disheartening because we have 74 countries that are coming in. Just a very few countries have pulled out," BFI executive director Col Arun Malik told PTI.

"We have countries like Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, China, they are the strongest nations of the world, they are all coming. "I don't think we have any reason to get disheartened. It's a very good response, the numbers are bigger than they were in Istanbul, the countries are more."

Seven Olympic medallists are among 350 boxers from 74 countries who have so far registered their names for the biennial showpiece. The BFI, on it's part, has initiated a dialogue with six of the boycotting countries and is hopeful that they some of them will reverse their decision to skip the tournament in Delhi.

"We have written to six countries that have pulled out. They are open to talking to the President Mr Ajay Singh. We don't know at what level the decision has been taken by them, if the national federation has taken it or the decision is taken by the government.

"But the endeavour is there to get some of these countries if not all to participate," Malik added.

The national federation is also in talks with IBA. The recent events have put India in a difficult situation as a host nation. "Even when we are interacting, some people have mentioned they would love to play in India, love their athletes to come to India and box here.

"The exposure the Indian boxers can offer, they will not get anywhere else. We have one of the strongest women boxing team in India."

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