Photo Credit: AIBA/IOC

AIBA causes outrage by allowing Professional boxers into the Olympics.

AIBA (International Boxing Association) has today approved the participation of professional boxers to enter the Olympic Games if they choose to do so. The head of AIBA Ching-Kuo Wu has said that “the change of the AIBA constitution was approved with 95% in favour, paving the way for professionals to fight for medals for the first time at the Olympics starting on 5 August.” So to put the percentage into a tangible figure means that 84 out of the 88 associations who are under the AIBA umbrella voted in favour of the change to the constitution.

The decision has caused outrage amongst current and ex professionals with quotes from Carl Frampton saying the change is “ridiculous” and amateur and pro boxing are “completely different sports”. Ricky Hatton has been quoted in saying “Goodbye amateur boxing now as far as I’m concerned”

Before the decision was made by AIBA today the WBC in March of this year stated “The World Boxing Council rules that any world champion or top 15 ranked boxer per division of the WBC that participates in the Olympic Games would be immediately expelled.” I would also presume with today’s announcement that the WBC will take stronger actions against any potential professional seeking to qualify. Is it possible to enforce sanctions on not to be ranked or be able to fight for WBC titles is a realistic possibility? We can only wait and see what the future developments come up with.

The decision means any professional can enter a qualifying event in Venezuela next month in an attempt to win selection, with 26 entry places up for grabs. I cannot confirm the exact date but it is being widely reported as some point in July which is short notice as the Olympics take place in August will fighters be prepared correctly I’m not entirely convinced .

One thing which I can say for certain is that it will be an interesting period from now till the games in the boxing world.


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