New Delhi: Professional Boxers can now compete at the upcoming 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, provided they qualify for the event, which means Olympic medallist Vijender Singh, now full time into professional boxing could have another shot at Olympic glory.
Of the 88 members of the International Boxing Association who participated in the AIBA Congress meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland, 84 voted in favour of the new rule change while four abstained.
A total of 26 entry places can be earned at an Olympic qualifying tournament in Venezuela next month, the AIBA said.
The body’s president, Dr Ching-Kuo Wu, said, “We want the best boxers to come to the Olympic Games. It is AIBA’s 70th birthday and we want something to change – not after four years, but now.
“It is an IOC policy to have the best athletes in the Games and of the international federations, AIBA is probably the only one without professional athletes in the Olympics.”
He further added, “When I took over the presidency in 2006 I made it very clear the term of amateur is not really relevant because when you look now at all the Olympic sports, who is really amateur?”
With the new rules all set to be applied in the upcoming Olympics, it will be very interesting to see the professional take on the trained amateur Boxers in the Olympic ring.