India throws in the WSB towel after just one round
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Indian boxing will receive a massive jolt as the country's franchise in the World Series of Boxing is preparing to pull out from the upcoming season due to paucity of funds and administrative hassles.
The Mumbai-based TransStadia, is likely to call it quits after just one season in the event, which is a club-based part-professional league with winners in different categories getting direct qualification to the Olympics.
The franchise, which was to start its campaign this season against Dynamo Moscow on November 17, has not even started its camp in Pune to train the boxers.
None of the boxers who competed for the team last season have been given any official intimation as their contracts had expired for this year. The Mumbai Fighters were to recruit new boxers for this season. Interestingly, the Fighters are not the only ones trying to shut shop in WSB as sources said four other countries were also preparing to walk out of the ambitious tournament, which was the International Boxing Association's attempt at competing with the professional leagues.
The federation, on its part, claimed ignorance of the pullout and no official came on record to speak on the issue. National coach GS Sandhu was also caught unawares by the development but felt if true, it was bad news for the sport.
"Participating in the WSB and the AIBA Professional Boxing is very important for the over all development of Indian boxers. We definitely need to compete in these events to excel at the world level because Olympic quota places are at stake here. If the Indian franchise is withdrawing than I would say it is a huge loss for Indian boxing," he said.