Other Sport

Olympic boxing qualifier goes ahead despite virus fears

2020-03-16 15:35
(iStock)

Olympic boxing qualifiers for fighters from Europe were taking place in London on Monday behind closed doors despite mounting concerns over coronavirus and enormous disruption across the world of sport.

The Boxing Road to Tokyo event in London started on Saturday in front of paying spectators at the Copper Box Arena and is due to run until 24 March.

It features around 350 male and female boxers from dozens of nations and is the first opportunity for boxers from Europe to qualify for Tokyo 2020.

The IOC Boxing Task Force, in a statement on Sunday, said the rest of the event, from Monday, would take behind closed doors "due to the changing situation with coronavirus and concerns for public, athlete and volunteer welfare".

Shortly before that decision, the head of European boxing told the BBC he was "very concerned" that the event was taking place.

European Boxing Confederation (EUBC) president Franco Falcinelli said he feared the risk of a boxer getting the virus was "very high".

"In my opinion it's very strange that England - and the competition - is open at this hard time," he said.

Falcinelli also said he was concerned that the athletes could struggle to return home because of flight restrictions.

Britain's death toll from Covid-19 rose on Sunday to 35. Official figures showed the country has recorded 1,372 confirmed cases.

Organisers of the boxing qualifiers said before the event started that measures had been put in place to protect competitors.

"All of the teams have been told to adopt regular handwashing," they said in a statement.

"If any of their group begins to exhibit cold or flu symptoms they are advised to self-isolate, stay indoors, avoid contact with other people and contact the LOC's (local organising committee's) chief medical officer."

Additional measures include routine temperature testing as part of daily medicals.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Saturday said the country would host the Tokyo Olympics, due to start on 24 July, as planned.

Read more on:    coronavirus  |  boxing

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

The 2019/20 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs
Vote

Caster Semenya's decision to switch to the women's 200m in an attempt to run at the Tokyo Olympics (assuming it goes ahead), is ...

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.