Millennium Post

Boxing mess may ruin careers Indian of boxers, says official

Bickering in the Indian boxing community may lead to a mass exodus of Olympic medal prospects to the professional circuit as they are "starved" of exposure due to the absence of a national federation, South Asian Games Tournament Director (Boxing) Lenny D'Gama has said.

"Our boxers are starved of exposure, the primary reason being the derecognition of the Indian federation by (the world governing body) AIBA. After the World Championships in Doha, we did not have anything," D'Gama, a former referee, told PTI on the sidelines of the Games at the SAI Campus in the North Eastern Hill University on the outskirts of the city here. A 13-member boxing delegation had an exposure trip to the Chinese city of Qian'an where the Zonal Olympic qualifiers are due next month but D'Gama said they need much more than that as none has yet qualified for the Olympics. "I'm fearing that with the frustration creeping in among the boxers they might join the newly-launched professional boxing body (IBC). They're at the mercy of Indian Boxing Federation. If it happens we'll lose out on all the good boxers. Afterall, the ad-hoc body's powers are limited." Currently two bodies, the Professional Boxing Organisation of India (PBOI) and the Indian Boxing Council - are handing out licenses to interested boxers.

"The silver-lining is that AIBA wants to have a new federation and early elections and to scan the candidates and hopefully things would improve. If it does not happen, the boxers will surely join pro boxing," he added.
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