This week's biggest men's elite competition, the 2nd edition of the Laszlo Papp Memorial Tournament will start on Thursday 25 August in Hajduszoboszlo, in the Eastern part of Hungary.
Hungarian legend and superpower Laszlo Papp became the first boxer in the world to reach three Olympic Games titles. Middleweight two-time European Champion, Papp triumphed at the 1948, 1952 and 1956 Summer Olympic Games. Papp was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2001. Ill, he passed away in 2003 but the Hungarian Boxing Association decided to launch a tournament in memory of his legend.
The host city of the event is one of the spa capital of Hungary. His new boxing life comes from the launch of the Laszlo Papp Boxing Academy in 2007. Now a lot of young talents hope to reach great successes in a few years.
Altogether 55 boxers from nine nations will enter the three-days event: Czech Republic, England, Finland, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Scotland, Serbia, Slovakia and Ukraine. This is the first time in the tournament's short history that a nation from outside Europe (Kazakhstan) competes.
The best Hungarian boxers will take part in the event, preparing, with head coach dr. Laszlo Kovacs in their Olympic Training Camp of Tata, for the upcoming AIBA World Championships.
Hungary's welterweight No.1 is former AIBA Junior World Champion, 23-year-old Balazs Bacskai, who was gold medalist at the 2010 European Championships in Moscow and lost only twice in the past two years.
Two-times AIBA World Championships bronze medalist, veteran Gyula Kate, obtained four medals in his five appearances in the European Championships. His main target in Baku will be to reach the Olympic quota.
European Championships bronze medalist and Turkish Prime Ministry Tournament winner, 24-year-old Miklos Varga, lives and trains very close to Hajduszoboszlo. He can therfore expects plenty of fans in an event for which he is the top favourite in the lightweight class.
Hungary's heavyweight No.1 is two-times European Championships bronze medalist, 26-year-old Jozsef Darmos, who lost to Azerbaijan's Teymur Mammadov only by individual scores at the European Championships in June. He is about to be back to his top form and a victory in Hajduszoboszlo would not be a that surprising.
The British team will compete with excellent boxers: European Championships silver medalist Khalid Saeed Yafai, his younger brother and European Championships bronze medalist Gamal, Commonwealth Champion Iain Weaver and AIBA World Championships bronze medalist Bradley Saunders.
Kazakhstan, Asia's leading boxing nation, will send a team for the very first time. Their squad includes defending Kazakh National Champion Ali Baybuzov and Bocskai Memorial Tournament bronze medalist Suleyman Berdukayev who will be Bacskai's biggest rival in the welterweight class.
The Finnish national squad will be competing at the tournament with three qualified boxers such as AIBA Youth World Championships bronze medalist Matti Koota, Bocskai Memorial Tournament silver medalist Eemeli Katajisto and European Junior Championships bronze medalist Ville Hukkanen. All of them will also compete at the upcoming AIBA World Championships.
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