IOC decision to benefit women’s boxing

The International Olympic Committee decision to transfer two weights from men to women boxing competitions for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics is bound to have its positive impact on women's boxing.

After the IOC decision, women will have competitions in five weights and men will have fights in eight instead of 10.   -  M. Moorthy (Representative Image)

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) decision to transfer two weights from men to women boxing competitions for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics is bound to have its positive impact on women's boxing.

Women's boxing, which made its debut in the 2012 London Olympics, had three weight classes – 51kg, 60kg and 75kg – in the last two Olympics. After the IOC decision, which was aimed at achieving greater gender equality in the Olympics, women will have competitions in five weights and men will have fights in eight instead of 10.

With the whole world focussing on building up for the Olympics, most of the women boxers are facing practical problems as far as preparation is concerned. “Most of the countries are concentrating on weights featuring in the Olympics. So, we could send only three boxers for the President's Cup in Kazakhstan. Now three more will go for an event in Ulaanbaatar. The camp is also held accordingly. We had to convince the Sports Authority of India (SAI) that we must field 10 boxers in the Asian women's championship in November. Now a camp for all 10 weights will start from June 20,” said chief national women's coach G. S. Sandhu.

However, Sandhu, who served as the men's coach for a long time, is hopeful that the IOC's stress on gender equality will help fetch more camps and exposure trips for women boxers. “Definitely, things will become better because of the IOC decision. The number of women participants is likely to increase in each weight. For men, the bouts will become more competitive as more boxers will try to get themselves accommodated in lesser number of weights. No doubt it is a setback for men, but at the same time it is good for women's boxing.”

Meanwhile, the number of women's weights will also go up from three to six (48kg, 51kg, 57kg, 60kg, 75kg, +75kg) in the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.