Umar Kremlev with President, Boxing Federation of India Ajay Singh, Boxer Estelle Mossely, Boxer Sara Haghighat-joo and social media influencer Abdu Rozik | PTI
New Delhi: The International Boxing Association (IBA) President Umar Kremlev on Tuesday termed India as the capital of women's boxing as the country is all set for the biggest boxing event with the IBA Women's World Boxing Championships 2023, kickstarting on Wednesday at New Delhi's Indira Gandhi Sports Complex.
Hosted by the Boxing Federation of India (BFI), the prestigious tournament is taking place in India for the third time--the most for any country in the history of the championship. The previous two editions took place in 2006 and 2018 in New Delhi.
"India became the capital of women's boxing and now we are witnessing historical moments together. Generally, 250 to 260 boxers compete in such championships but this year it's a huge championship," Kremlev said while addressing the media during the press conference which was also attended by the BFI President Ajay Singh along with the Rio Olympics champion Estelle Mossely of France and the reigning African champion Sara Haghighat-joo from Sierra Leone.
The upcoming 13th edition of the tournament will witness participation of more than 300 boxers form 65 countries competing for the title as well as the massive prize pool of INR 20 core across 12 weight categories.
"I think the fact that India is hosting the championship for the third time is testimony to the fact that India is a real power in boxing and as the IBA President said it is indeed a capital of women's boxing in the world. What gives us even greater pleasure is the fact that the sport has enabled us to empower women in our country. And we look upon boxing as one of the paths by which women from backgrounds, which are not often the best, rise up and become champions of the world," said BFI President Ajay Singh.
An IOC monitoring team, led by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), has also arrive in India and the PwC team will work in parallel with the IBA onsite as Prof Richard McLaren and his McLaren Independent Investigation Team (MIIT) will be responsible for the background vetting check of the competition officials at the championship. Kremlev further added that there will be no doubts about the integrity of the competition with the monitoring team and the bout review rule in place.
The opening ceremony on Wednesday will be attended by the Honourable Union Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports Anurag Singh Thakur, IBA President Kremlev and BFI President Ajay Singh along with brand ambassador of the event MC Mary Kom, six-time world champion, and guest of Bollywood star Farhan Akhtar. (ANI)