New Delhi: Boxing Federation on India (BFI) President Ajay Singh announced on Friday that the inaugural edition of the Indian Open will take place from January 28 to February 1 here.
Singh said that the annual tournament comprising four teams each of both men and women will be classified into India A, India B, India C and India D, will be held at the Thyagaraj Stadium in the national capital.
“Keeping in mind that 2018 is a crucial year for boxing because of the Asian Games and Commonwealth Games, we are now planning to host the Indian Open for the very first time from January 28-February 1,” Singh told IANS after felicitating the Youth Women’s World Championships medallists, here.
“There will be four teams each of both men and women which will include all the Olympic weight categories. This will help us hunt the medal prospects not only for the upcoming tournaments but also for Tokyo Olympics and further.
Commenting on India’s preparations for the Asian Games and the CWG-2018, Singh said: “Preparations are going on in full swing. Our aim is to maximize the medal haul and we are looking forward to selecting our best teams for the event.”
“We are fortunate to have many top boxers in each category, so we have a strong bench strength as well. I feel the competition is going to be really tough,” he added.
Fresh from the resounding success of the Youth Worlds in Guwahati, Singh presented cheques of Rs 2 lakh each to the gold medallists and Rs 50 thousand each to the bronze medallists.
“It is the first time in history that India has hosted an event of such stature, so it is certainly a huge step forward. The success of these young girls will surely brighten India’s prospects in boxing in global tournaments,” he said.
Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, who was also present during the felicitation, presented cheques of Rs 6,70,000 each to the gold winners besides Rs 2,50,000 to the bronze medallists. Five-time World Champion M.C. Mary Kom was also present on the occasion.