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IBF ban leaves domestic calendar in disarray

The Indian Boxing Federation's (IBF) suspension by the world governing body (AIBA) may not have hampered the national contingent's participation in international events, but it has certainly thrown the domestic calendar in disarray.

other Updated: Nov 21, 2013 00:29 IST
Navneet Singh

The Indian Boxing Federation's (IBF) suspension by the world governing body (AIBA) may not have hampered the national contingent's participation in international events, but it has certainly thrown the domestic calendar in disarray.

With no immediate solution in view, the senior national championships and other national-level competitions are on hold. IBF secretary-general, Rajesh Bhandari, admitted the ban has been a "knockout punch".

"It has restricted our domestic activities to an extent," he told HT from Shimla. National meets act as a platform for identifying fresh talent and the smooth functioning of the national body helps in roping in sponsors.

Till sometime back, the IBF used to offer cash incentives to competitors from the quarterfinal stage onwards. "That practice has been stopped," said a federation official.

Though Bhandari was confident the IBF would complete its calendar by March, a federation official claimed national competitions would be meaningless as long as the federation is banned. "At the moment, a national meet will not be recognised, hence the federation is waiting for the suspension to be revoked," he added.

AIBA doesn't recognise Bhandari's team as well as the previous office-bearers, as the world body claims the elections held in September 2012 were manipulated. As a result, the IBF was suspended in December.

As things stand, the issue could drag on. AIBA, in its latest communication to the IBF, has stated that the Indian Olympic Association (IOA), which also stands banned, will sort out the issue.

To end the impasse, Bhandari plans to request AIBA for a fresh date for re-election. "We are ready," he said on making amendments to the constitution as per AIBA guidelines.