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The upcoming ASBC Asian Men’s & Women’s Boxing Championships is scheduled to be held in New Delhi, India, but due to the current Covid-19 situation, the event has been relocated to Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Boxers born between 1980 and 2002 are eligible to participate in the ASBC Asian Men’s & Women’s Elite Boxing Championships in 10 weight categories both for men and women.

Among the boxing powers of the Asian continent, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, India, Thailand, Philippines, Mongolia, South Korea, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan registered to participate in the forthcoming Championships. Such developing boxing countries in the Asian continent as Afghanistan, Laos, Macau, Nepal, Qatar, Sri Lanka and Yemen also will attend the competition.

Bahrain has done its debut at the ASBC Asian Elite Boxing Championships, and the country will return to the upcoming edition to Dubai. Kuwait returned after a break at the 2019 ASBC Asian Elite Boxing Championships in Bangkok, but this time, the country will attend the new edition with a bigger team.

Among the defending AIBA Men’s Elite World Champions, Uzbekistan’s trio Shakhobiddin Zoirov, Mirazizbek Mirzakhalilov and Bakhodir Jalolov, furthermore, Kazakhstan’s Bekzad Nurdauletov will be there in Dubai. AIBA Women’s World Champions, Philippines’ Nesthy Petecio is also planning to attend.

History of the ASBC Asian Elite Boxing Championships

The first Asian Boxing Championships for the elite men boxers was held in Thailand’s capital Bangkok in 1963. His Majesty and Excellency King Bhumibol Adulyadej, the ninth King from the Chakri dynasty, Rama IX, took part in the finals of the 1963 Asian Boxing Championships in Bangkok.

The continent’s governing body, the Asian Boxing Federation (FAAB), was established in 1962, and one year later, the first Asian Boxing Championships was scheduled. Bangkok received the right to host the first historical edition of the Asian Boxing Championships that supported the progress of the boxers before the first Olympic Games in Asia, which took place in Tokyo in 1964. in Bangkok, boxers could take part in eleven weight classes in the 1963 Asian Boxing Championships, from the light flyweight (48kg) up to the heavyweight (+81kg).

South Korea, Sri Lanka, Philippines, Iran, Thailand, Japan, Indonesia, Kuwait, China, Uzbekistan, Malaysia, Vietnam, Mongolia and Jordan are those National Federations that hosted the recent 30 editions of the Asian Boxing Championships between 1963 and 2019. Bangkok was the most popular venue of the Asian Boxing Championships; the city hosted the competition seven times.

Japan and Pakistan were the best nations in the Bangkok 1963 Asian Boxing Championships, but South Korea topped the medal table in 1965, 1967 and also in 1970. Iran topped the medal table in the 1971 Asian Boxing Championships, where they had five finalists, three of whom won the gold medals.

Thailand, Japan, Kazakhstan, China and Uzbekistan were also among the team champions in the later editions. The strength of the Asian Boxing Championships was dramatically increased in 1994 when such ex-Soviet Central Asian countries as Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan joined the competition.

Asia’s biggest boxing stars, such as China’s two-time Olympic Games winner Zou Shiming, South Korea’s Kim Kwang Sun, Uzbekistan’s Mohammadqodir Abdullaev, Kazakhstan’s Yermakhan Ibraimov, Thailand’s Somluck Kamsing and Uzbekistan’s Hasanboy Dusmatov, all won the Asian Boxing Championships in the past.

Women and men boxers attended together the last edition of the ASBC Asian Elite Boxing Championships for the very first time. The event was held in 10 female and 10 male weight categories at the Huamark Indoor Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, in April 2019. Fourteen nations represented the finals in the seven-day long competition, and among them, a record number of 10 countries claimed gold medals in Bangkok.

Altogether, a record number of 304 athletes, including 112 women and 192 men boxers, attended the 2019 ASBC Asian Confederation Boxing Championships. The number of the participating countries was 34, which also sets up a record in the history of the tournament.

Participating nations at the ASBC Asian Elite Boxing Championships

Afghanistan, Bahrain, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, South Korea, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Sri Lanka, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkmenistan, host United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan and Yemen.

India’s boxing icon Chungneijang Mary Kom Hmangte will compete in Dubai

India’s Chungneijang Mary Kom Hmangte is a six-times AIBA Women’s World Champion, five-times ASBC Asian Women’s Champion, Asian Games winner and Commonwealth Games gold medallist. She won most of her titles in the light flyweight (48kg), but because of the Olympic weight categories, Mary Kom will compete in the flyweight (51kg) in Dubai as in recent years.

In the absence of the powerful Chinese, Japanese, DPR Korean and Vietnamese stars of this weight category, Mary Kom could be the main favorite in Dubai. She returned to the international stage after one year of a break at the Boxam Tournament this March, where she claimed a bronze medal. Mary Kom’s main rival could be Kazakhstan’s two-time AIBA Women’s World Champion Nazym Kyzaibay at the upcoming event.

The men’s flyweight is super strong in Dubai

The defending AIBA World Champion in the men’s flyweight (52kg) is Uzbekistan’s Shakhobiddin Zoirov, who defeated one of his main rivals, Kazakhstan’s two-time ASBC Asian Youth Champion Makhmud Sabyrkhan, in the final of the Governor Cup last week. Zoirov defeated India’s star Amit Panghal at the 2019 AIBA World Boxing Championships in Ekaterinburg. Their possible re-match could be another highlight of this weight class. Kyrgyzstan’s former ASBC Asian Champion Azat Usenaliev won almost all of his international contests in the previous years while South Korea’s AIBA World Boxing Championships bronze medallist Kim In Kyu, Thailand’s new sensation Thitisan Panmod and Philippines’ Carlo Paalam are also on the registration list.

Jalolov vs Kunkabayev could be a highlight of the men’s event

Uzbekistan’s defending AIBA World Champion Bakhodir Jalolov defeated his Kazakh rival Kamshybek Kunkabayev in the final of the super heavyweight (+91kg) at the 2019 AIBA World Boxing Championships and in the last two editions of the ASBC Asian Elite Boxing Championships. Kunkabayev defeated his 202cm Uzbek star in the World Series of Boxing and the Hamburg 2017 AIBA World Boxing Championships. The neighboring rivals knew each other well, and their next possible meeting in Dubai could be a real highlight. The Kazakh boxer was one of the Ambassadors of the AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships in Kielce, Poland.

List of the defending titleholders in ASBC Asian Elite Boxing Championships

Women’s 48kg: Josie Gabuco, Philippines

Women’s 51kg: Pang Chol Mi, DPR Korea

Women’s 54kg: Shi Qian, China

Women’s 57kg: Lin Yu Ting, Chinese Taipei

Women’s 60kg: Yang Wenlu, China

Women’s 64kg: Dou Dan, China

Women’s 69kg: Gu Hong, China

Women’s 75kg: Li Qian, China

Women’s 81kg: Pooja Rani, India

Women’s +81kg: Yang Xiaoli, China

Men’s 49kg: Nodirjon Mirzakhmedov, Uzbekistan

Men’s 52kg: Amit Panghal, India

Men’s 56kg: Mirazizbek Mirzakhalilov, Uzbekistan

Men’s 60kg: Erdenebat Tsendbaatar, Mongolia

Men’s 64kg: Bakhodur Usmonov, Tajikistan

Men’s 69kg: Bobo-Usmon Baturov, Uzbekistan

Men’s 75kg: Tursynbay Kulakhmet, Kazakhstan

Men’s 81kg: Bek Nurmaganbet, Kazakhstan

Men’s 91kg: Kim Hyeong Kyu, South Korea

Men’s +91kg: Bakhodir Jalolov, Uzbekistan