IBA called on countries to withdraw from boxing tournament over US participation

The International Boxing Association (IBA) has called on countries to withdraw from a Czech Republic event due to the “illegitimate participation of US athletes and officials.” The IBA wrote to participating national federations in relation to the 53rd International Elite Men’s and Women’s Boxing Tournament “Grand Prix,” demanding that they withdraw. Brazil, France, and Poland subsequently pulled out. The tournament was organised by the Czech Boxing Association (CBA) and held from May 3-8 in Usti nad Labem, north of Prague.

The IBA secretary-general and CEO, George Yerolimpos, criticised the behaviour of both the CBA and USA Boxing, stating: “They have both created a situation where our athletes are no longer able to compete under safe conditions in addition to the wasted time, effort, and money to travel to the event.” The CBA is yet to make any comment on the matter. USA Boxing, which represents the country with the most Olympic boxing medals, withdrew from the IBA in April and is set to join the World Boxing organisation.

The IBA said it had lodged an official complaint with the Boxing Independent Integrity Unit against the CBA for the involvement of USA Boxing members. The situation has resulted in American boxers unable to take part in competitions. USA Boxing operates as an independent entity, with its own training and Olympic programme, but had been part of the IBA since 1983.

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