•In a communique signed by its president, Umar Kremlev, AIBA said the shock decision to push the tournament to a later date was informed by a wide array of challenges bedevilling member federations.
•Kenya will look to use the event to redeem its battered image following a string of unimpressive outcomes both at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the men’s World Boxing Championships in Belgrade, Serbia held last month.
Hit Squad head coach, Benjamin Musa has said postponement of the 12th edition of the Women’s World Championships gives the country a perfect opportunity to sharpen more for the global show.
The International Boxing Association (AIBA) on Wednesday moved to postpone the tournament which had earlier been scheduled to take place from December 4 to 19 in Istanbul, Turkey.
However, Musa says the Hit Squad will capitalise on the hiccup to punch furiously on the bag ahead of the games which have now been set for March next year.
“It’s quite fortunate that we were yet to report to camp. Otherwise our preparations could have been thrown into disarray,” said Musa.
“We were planning to summon the team to camp after conducting selection at the forthcoming President Jamal boxing tournament scheduled for Nyayo Stadium this weekend,” said Musa.
“We need to take at least 13 boxers to the event but only five have been actively involved in competitions, including Christine Ongare and Elizabeth Akinyi who participated at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. That being the situation, we must find ways of identifying more boxers for the remaining slots,” said Musa.
Musa, however, hopes the selected team will get the necessary exposure ahead of the games to enable them to sharpen their claws better for the medal hunt.
“What both our men and women boxers have lacked all along is exposure in major tournaments. It’s only there that they can learn about the constant changes being made to the rules because the game is so dynamic,” said Musa.
“For example, it was during the just concluded men’s World Boxing Championships in Serbia that we realised boxers are not supposed to punch with force to score points. Meaning points can still be earned by tapping,” lamented Musa.
In a communique signed by president, Umar Kremlev, AIBA said the shock decision to push the tournament to a later date was informed by a wide array of challenges bedevilling member federations.
“Thank you for replying to our email and providing the necessary information about your possibilities and/or potential restrictions to attending the Women’s World Championships in Istanbul, scheduled from the December 4-19,” read the communique.
“Whilst AIBA has been working hard to maintain the schedule of this event, the feedback received is that too many national federations are facing difficult situations and restrictions within their countries. Regrettably, the Covid-19 situation is too difficult at the moment,” read the statement.
“As such, AIBA Board of Directors, in consensus with the Turkish National Federation has decided to postpone the Women’s World Championship to March 2022,” read the statement.
“We are aware that some teams have already started preparations for this event and will be disappointed. However, please understand that the safety and wellbeing of athletes, officials and other stakeholders is a priority, and therefore we cannot take the risk to proceed with the event,” it continued.
Kenya will look to use the event to redeem their battered image following a string of unimpressive outcomes both at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the men’s World Boxing Championships in Belgrade, Serbia held last month.
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