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Tajikistan’s two best youth athletes are taking part in the AIBA Road to Sofia training camp to prepare for the upcoming AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships Sofia 2014, the only Qualifying Event for the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games.

Tajikistan’s boxing life turned into a new era when Abdusalom Khasanov claimed a bronze medal at the 2003 AIBA World Boxing Championships in Bangkok, Thailand. Since then the strong Central Asian nation took several medals in the AIBA and in the ASBC events in all age groups and both genders. Tajikistan’s new future hopes could be their top elite athletes in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

Their best youth boxer Shabbos Negmatulloev is member of the national squad since 2011 when he was only 14 and made his debut in the international level. He trains with experienced coach Abbos Negmatulloev who is his father and his biggest mentor in our beloved combat sport.

Shabbos won the Tajikistan’s Schoolboys National Championships when he was 13 and that success was the first step for him in boxing. Tajikistan’s new hope won a bronze medal at the AIBA Junior World Championships in Kiev and he reached the same result at the ASBC Asian Junior Championships in Shymkent, Kazakhstan last year.

Tajikistan’s multiple Junior National Champion claimed an excellent gold medal at the Mengerey Khayrutdinov Youth Memorial Tournament in Almaty, Kazakhstan in December and following his strong performance he was awarded a valuable trophy the Best Junior Athlete of Tajikistan in the Year 2013.

Tajikistan’s new pride claimed a silver medal at the last edition of the ASBC Asian Youth Championships in Bangkok in January where only Uzbekistan’s star and multiple international tournament winner Bektemir Melikuziyev was able to defeat him. Shabbos is not only medal contender at the AIBA Youth World Championships in Sofia next month but a strong Asian favourite for the future events.

Their second member in the AIBA Road to Sofia Program will be Umed Yakubov who was also born in the capital city of the country in Dushanbe in 1997 which means both of the top youth athletes of Tajikistan will be able to continue their career in the youth level in 2015 as well. Yakubov won the Schoolboys National Championships of the Republic of Tajikistan in 2010 when he competed in the 39kg weight class at the age of 13.

Following that national success he received the right to compete at the Mezhenev Junior Tournament in Kurgan one year later and dominated all of his fights against strong Russian rivals at the Pinweight class (46 kg). This tournament was an excellent international debut for the speedy boxer but after that success in Russia he had hand injuries and needed some months to reach the same top level.

Yakubov involved to Tajikistan’s junior national squad in 2013 and competed in the ASBC Asian Junior Continental Championships in Shymkent, Kazakhstan and at the AIBA Junior World Championships in Kiev where he won two contests. He was very near to get at least a bronze in the Ukrainian event but might be he will be able to do this mission in the upcoming AIBA Youth World Championships in Sofia.