Major overhaul for Olympic qualification

The Boxing Task Force cancel the World qualifier as they overhaul the Olympic qualification system

THE Boxing Task Force, which has been administering Olympic boxing since the suspension of AIBA, has announced a major overhaul for the Olympic qualification process.

The coronavirus pandemic stalled the qualifiers in their tracks last year. The African and Asia/Oceania events had been completed and the results there stand. The European Olympic qualification event was halted after three days in March 2020 and will resume where it left off. It will now take place later this year in June, with the exact dates and the location still to be confirmed. The Americas qualification event, postponed in its entirety last year, has been rescheduled for May 10-16 in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Originally a final World qualification event for all regions was going to take place in France. That has now been cancelled. Instead the 53 (32 for men and 21 for women) OIympic quota places that would have been available there will be granted now according to the Boxing Task Force’s rankings. The Task Force plan to allocate them equally across the four regions (Africa, Americas, Asia/Oceania and Europe) and all the weight categories.

The Task Force rankings are dictated by performances in World and continental championships as well as these continental Olympic qualifiers, so there is still some scope for movement, but in essence this new system is good news for any boxers who have yet to qualify but are the most highly ranked in their weight in their region. It is bad news who anyone who was depending on the last chance World qualifier and adds an element of further pressure to those who must perform in their continental qualification event to win a place in the Tokyo Games.

It is at least, under these unique circumstances, a plausible way of completing qualification in time for the Olympics to happen.

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