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Monday. February 22. 2021

JBF submits petition to IOC’s task force, calling for staging final qualifying round

Japan Boxing Federation has submitted a petition to the International Olympic Committee’s special task force for boxing so that a final qualifying round for this year’s Tokyo Olympics, which was suspended in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, should be held, JBF President Sadanobu Uchida said at an online press conference on Feb. 21.

This is because the task force indicated on Feb. 16 that 53 men’s and female boxers, who were originally expected to be selected at the final qualifying round in Paris in June, now will be assigned based on their rankings of the International Boxing Association or AIBA, which the IOC suspended its recognition in 2019 due to corruption scandals.

JBF is of the view that if the task force selects the 53 Olympic participants based on AIBA’s old rankings, strong up-and-coming boxers who had nothing to do with AIBA will be deprived of their chances to enter the Olympics.

Also, those boxers who lost to these young boxers in their respective domestic competitions can have the right to enter the Olympics if the old rankings are applied.

Uchida said, ‘’Since Japanese prospects are not ranked, the task force’s selection based on (the old) rankings is not fair. A final qualifying round is a must to conduct the Olympics impartially.’’ Uchida also indicated the JBF will seek other nations’ support in this respect.

Featherweight Hayato Tsutsumi of Toyo University, light heavyweight Ren Umemura of Iwate Sports Association are men’s boxers in question, while lightweight Saya Hamamoto of Nippon Sport Science University, welterweight Mai Kito of the graduate school of Chukyo University and Arisa Tsubata of Nishisaitama Chuo National Hospital are female boxers targeted.

At present, men’s welterweight Sewon Okazawa and a pair of female boxers, flyweight Tsukimi Namiki of Japan Self-Defense Forces and featherweight Sena Irie of Nippon Sport Science University, who all won in the Asian and Oceanian championships, are qualified for the Olympics.

In addition to them, flyweight Ryomei Tanaka of Chukyo High School teacher, lightweight Daisuke Narimatsu of JSDF and middleweight Yuito Moriwaki of JSDF, all men, have already been qualified for the Olympics as a host nation’s privilege.

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