Decades of collective expertise across all areas of boxing convened in New Delhi as the AIBA Commissions continued to plan key developments for the sport.
With the focus placed firmly on optimising the structure of the Tokyo 2020 boxing competition, the meetings built on the first reforms of the new Olympic Cycle initiated at the end of 2016, when the R&J and T&R Commissions tabled their recommendations for changes to R&J operations and an improved Calendar.
With those key structural reforms already trialled and approved, discussions in New Delhi centred around an expansion in the number of women’s boxing weight categories at Tokyo in line with the IOC’s gender equality priority set out in its Agenda 2020, with further input from the Medical Commission regarding ongoing research into headguard removal in line with elite men’s competitions. Education programmes continued to receive wide cross-Commission involvement, with ethics and values high on the agenda alongside the Year of Africa Legacy Project with the input of AFBC President Mr Kelani Bayor.
“The Commission meetings in New Delhi leave us in no doubt that over the next Olympic Cycle, AIBA will be putting the elements into place for the strongest Olympic Boxing competition we have seen in terms of organisation, the scope of participation and performance of officials. It was always our intention to empower the expertise on our Commissions to take the lead on these discussions, and having identified their key benchmarks in the lead-in to Tokyo 2020, AIBA can now prioritise and action them throughout the current cycle,” said AIBA President Dr Ching-Kuo Wu.
Athletes and Youth Commission
The creation of improved communication channels to give boxers a voice in the development of their sport will be prioritised, along with education of the athletes regarding adherence to the AIBA Code of Ethics.
Through the development of an entry-level E-learning platform, the commission will open channels for aspiring coaches to learn the basics of the profession, in conjunction with an expansion in the number of courses for more experienced coaches around the world.
The commission will be reinforcing and disseminating the AIBA Rules and Codes among all AIBA members in 2017, using the HeadsUp educational platform to provide greater awareness of possible sanctions and penalties for violations.
The commission will use 2017 to develop the AIBA brand, enhancing the recognition of the organisation’s formative role in the careers of the world’s greatest boxers to harness new markets and expand AIBA’s partnerships with global broadcasters.
AIBA’s continued cooperation with WADA to keep boxing free of doping will be enhanced through the creation of a medical database, including updated lists of banned substances to help ensure boxers, coaches and NFs have the latest information available to them.
Referees and Judges Commission
As well as publishing a revised R&J manual for all officials, the commission will embrace technology with the creation of an e-learning platform to help build the R&J community in less accessible NFs, as well as expanding the pool of officials at all levels by increasing the numbers of instructors and courses worldwide.
Technical and Rules Commission
The recommendation to broaden out the women’s Olympic boxing tournament to include the 57kg and 69kg weight categories is a T&R priority for the Tokyo 2020 cycle, alongside the creation of a stable qualification pathway to help NFs in their preparations.
The increased participation of women in the Tokyo 2020 boxing competition, as well as across the commissions themselves, were identified as priorities, along with research into the redesign of women’s uniforms to better suit their needs.
The World Series of Boxing competition will seek to restructure its ranking to provide a more engaging, effective system that can feed directly into Olympic qualification, as well as the creation of one-off opportunities for potential new franchises to test the format in a competitive environment.
AIBA underlines its support for the Boxing Federation of India
India was chosen as the venue for the 2017 Commissions Meetings in a signal of support for the new India Boxing Federation (BFI) administration under President Ajay Singh, elected in September of last year. India’s full membership of AIBA was unanimously reinstated at the Extraordinary Congress at the close of 2016, and following a highly successful and productive two days in Delhi, AIBA awaits the next phase of BFI growth as it looks to consolidate and develop the sport’s profile among its huge, young population to nurture a new generation of boxing champions.
“In hosting the 2017 AIBA Commissions, the BFI has been able to show its progress and potential to more than 100 experts from the world of boxing, and I am grateful to AIBA President Dr Wu for the opportunity and for embracing the Federation back into the AIBA family. We are excited about the enormous potential for India’s boxing talent along this Olympic Cycle to Tokyo and beyond, as we build a stronger future for the sport in this country,” said BFI President Mr Ajay Singh.