Monday 29 February 2016

Lennox Lewis Slams Plans For Professional Boxers At Rio Olympics

Radical new plans being pushed through by AIBA could theoretically have the likes of Anthony Joshua defend the heavyweight title he won at the London Games in 2012. AIBA president, Dr Ching-Kuo Wu, has suggested the prospect of having full-time professionals competing in Brazil is absolutely possible and former world heavyweight champion and Olympic gold medallist Lennox Lewis has called a proposal to allow professionals to box at this summer's Olympics preposterous

Wu said on Wednesday “We want the best boxers to come to the Olympic Games. It is AIBA's 70th birthday and we want something to change. It is an IOC policy to have the best athletes in the Games and of the international federations, AIBA is probably the only one without professional athletes in the Olympics. We already have our own professionals, APB and WSB boxers, in the Games - and we will go further

Lewis who spoke with BBC said “I know they are doing it for other sports but I don't think it works with boxing. I think it is preposterous to a certain degree. Olympic boxing is built for amateurs and is the highest achievement you can get, alongside being world amateur champion. All of a sudden you could have a scenario where someone like Wladimir Klitschko, who won Olympic gold in Atlanta and has so much experience, could go up against a kid of 18 who has had just 10 fights. I don't think it is fair. Even the scoring systems are different. In the professional game, you score on power punches and you keep pressure on your opponent, while the amateur system is to score points

The 50years old, who won gold at the Seoul Olympics in 1988 representing Canada before turning professional, retired in 2003 having won 41 of his 44 pro fights.

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