India one of 12 World Series Boxing franchisees

June 24th, 2009 - 9:35 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, June 24 (IANS) India is among the 12 countries to have been alloted a franchise for the International Boxing Association’s ambitious World Series of Boxing (WSB) starting September.
The IBA has selected India as one of the four city-based franchisees in Asia. The other eight will be in Europe and and America.

Twelve teams of 10 boxers each will compete in WSB on a home and away basis.

Indian Boxing Federation secretary general Col. P.K Muralidharan Raja said that AIBA has communicated the decision to them.

“We have been informed that India have been identified as one of the franchisees from Asia in WSB. It is a good news for the sport in the country and will help commercialize boxing,” Raja told IANS.

Raja, however, did not name the corporate that has been alloted the franchise in India.

“They have selected eight franchisees till now. WSB are still to select four more. They will be holding final negotiations and after that, they will formally name the team owners.”

“The boxers will be contracted with the franchisee. They will be getting remuneration.”

Raja said India’s domestic competitions would have to be restructured to ensure a bigger pool of boxers in the country.

“As the national federation, our job will be to support the team. In the first year, the boxers will be picked from the existing pool. But we will soon have a domestic league to identify talented boxers.”

WSB is an attempt to market the sport and cut the mushrooming promoter-based professional boxing leagues.

It will crown both individual boxers and city-based teams as world champions.

Boxers will be seen in action without head guards and vests and compete in five bouts of three minutes each in the 10-point scoring system, much like professional boxing.

WSB will be held in five weight categories - Bantam, Light, Middle, Light Heavy and Heavy. It will be the only professional boxing league that will allow professionals to retain their Olympic eligibility.

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