Russian official offers $ 16 mn to keep boxing in Olympics

AIBA,Russian boxing association,International Olympic Council,2020 Tokyo Olympics Games,Tokyo Olympics Games

A Russian boxing body official has offered to pay $ 16 million (₹ 110.52 crore) to ensure that boxing doesn’t lose its place in the Olympics. Boxing is faced with a threat of being eliminated from the 2020 Tokyo Olympics Games.

Russian boxing association secretary-general Umar Kremlev has offered to the International Olympic Council $16 million fore retaining his “favourite sports” in the Olympic Games. The Russian boxing official has made a formal offer in writing.

Kremlev is also an AIBA member.

The money from Kremlev, who has described himself as a former promoter, would go toward steadying the international boxing federation, or AIBA, which faces a sizable debt along with other troubling issues, states an LA Times report. “Boxing is one of the oldest Olympic sports,” he wrote, adding: “I am ready to begin negotiations as soon as possible.

“Our main goal is to continue the successful development of boxing to save its rightful place in the Olympic movement.”

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Boxing is in trouble primarily because the world governing body president Gafur Rakhimov has been identified by the U.S. Treasury Department as “an important person involved in the heroin trade”. Rakhimov has recently stepped aside but did not resign, meaning he could return to his post.

The IOC has launched in inquiry that is expected to conclude in late May, at which point the organization could decide to drop boxing from the 2020 Tokyo Olympics or, perhaps, continue without AIBA’s involvement.

IOC members might eventually vote to decertify AIBA.

“I am ready to close all the debts of AIBA in full, so long as our favorite sport remains in the Olympic program,” Kremlev, a former security company owner,

AIBA has earlier stated that it has “significant debts of over $16 million” and needs Olympic revenue from the IOC to survive, adds AP.

The IOC declined to give details of the interim report given to board members Thursday. A final report should be delivered on May 22 by a three-person panel, chaired by IOC board member Nenad Lalovic, the Serbian president of wrestling’s governing body.

The boxing body questioned why a decision was not made Thursday , noting it had given the IOC several reports in the past year. They included steps to improve management, finances and improving fight judges.

“This further delay has a direct impact on our athletes,” AIBA executive director Tom Virgets of the United States said in a statement, adding “it is a complete disaster for boxers around the world who are being left in limbo without any support or access (to) funding.”

The IOC board could decide in May to drop boxing from the Tokyo lineup, or plan for men’s and women’s tournaments and qualifying events without AIBA’s involvement. The full IOC membership could vote to derecognize AIBA at their June 24-26 meeting in Lausanne.

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