New York, June 3 (IANS) Professional boxers from the United States will not be included in the national Olympic team for the 2016 Rio Olympics, USA Boxing has said.
The International Boxing Association (AIBA) announced on Wednesday that professional boxers were allowed to take part in the Rio Olympics, reports Tass.
“USA Boxing appreciates AIBA’s continuing efforts toward the evolution of international boxing, and we recognize that the admission of professional boxers is an inevitable development,” the statement on Thursday said.
“However, USA Boxing’s Olympic Selection procedures, on which our amateur athletes have relied for the past two years, preclude us from making the last minute changes that would be required to invite professionals to compete,” it added.
“We believe that many other countries face similar difficulties, and in fairness to our athletes who have already been selected to fulfill their Olympic dreams, we abstained from voting for the proposed change of the eligibility rules,” the statement said.
In line with the previous AIBA regulations, introduced in 2013, professional boxers were allowed to compete in the Olympics only if they had less than 15 career bouts, for which they received prize money, and if they had a special short-term contract signed with AIBA.
In line with AIBA’s decision announced on Wednesday, any professional boxer will now be able to participate in the 2016 Olympics this August.