PANAJI: Approximately 3000 promising youth and junior female pugilists are expected to participate in the five Open Zonal Boxing Championships, which will be initiated by Boxing Federation of India in collaboration with the Sports Authority of India; starting next month in a bid to unearth and nurture new talents from across the country – states a press release. The events will be held in junior girls and youth women categories.

This massive grassroot level initiative will start with the Khelo India East Zone Open Zonal Boxing Championship to be held in SAI Regional centre in Guwahati from September 15.

The Junior Girls competition is expected to witness 1400 entries, while 1600 boxers’ participation in the Youth Women section. The successful pugilists from the four zonal tournaments will progress to the Combined Open Zonal Boxing Championship, which would be held on a knock-out basis.

This Zonal Championship is part of BFI’s long-term plans to provide exposure and create a stronger bench strength for India women’s boxing.

“Our motive is to find new and fresh talents at Junior & Youth level. Such Open Championships will not only provide opportunity but also give a platform from where strong and talented contenders can get a direct shot at being selected for National Camp and represent India, complete and win medals for the country”, said Hemanta Kalita, Secretary General, Boxing Federation of India and General Secretary of Assam Amateur Boxing Association.

While East Zone and South Zone competitions are likely to witness participation close to 700 boxers (300 in Junior Girls and 400 in Youth Women), West Zone and North Zone events is likely to have 800 entries (400 in each category).

There will be 52 medals up for grabs in 13 different weight categories in the Junior Girls section, while 48 medals will be awarded in the 12 Youth Women categories as participations are expected from 28 states and eight Union Territories.

The official draw of the first of the four zonal events will be held at 5 pm on September 15 in Guwahati, with the competition scheduled to be held from September 16 to 22.


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