AIBA’s monetary reward for boxers will be life-changing- GBA President

- Expects nursery to expand in Guyana

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President of the Guyana Boxing Association, Steve Ninvalle, said the decision by the International Boxing Association (AIBA), the governing body for amateur boxing, to financially reward boxers, starting at the upcoming World Championship, will be life-changing.

AIBA recently announced that it will pay out US$100,000 for gold, US$50,000 for silver and US$25,000 for bronze at the World Championship in Belgrade, Serbia, from October 24 to November 6.

“What this does is inject the sort of energy and new enthusiasm (to the sport); it revolutionises what we call Amateur Boxing,” Ninvalle told News Room Sport.

“I would think that just the chance for any boxer across the Caribbean to fight for a US$100,000 says a lot. Our boxers have never had it.”

In September, AIBA announced that for the first time in its 75-year history, medal winners will be rewarded significant prize money, with the President Umar Kremlev saying it is “well-deserved.”

President of the Guyana Boxing Association, Steve Ninvalle

“It is the first time AIBA will reward medalists of the World Championships financially, and this is how it should be. This money is well-deserved taking into account the years of preparations required to earn a place at AIBA’s top tournament and the efforts made. We know this development will be a major benefit for our boxers. Not only should they be successful in the ring, but also self-sufficient and prosperous,” Kremlev said.

According to Ninvalle, this new development will be replicated at the Caribbean and local level, albeit not at the magnitude of AIBA.

“So from now on, any boxer representing the Guyana Boxing Association, once he fights in our national tournament, which is our national Open, he/she will have monetary rewards. It will also be within the Caribbean; if you go to a Caribbean championship there will be monetary rewards. I’m not saying that there will US$100,000, but there will be monetary awards,” the GBA head explained.

Ninvalle added that this new incentive will aid to expand the nursery in Guyana, as well as keep talents already part of the process.

Ninvalle, who is also the country’s Director of Sport, played an integral role in the inaugural Sport Conference held on October 2, which formed the basis for the first-ever Sport Academy, which has a component that deals with the nursery of the 12 core sports.

While Boxing has not been identified as one of the core sports in this initial phase, the GBA head pointed out that the Association will push ahead with its development agenda.

“AIBA is now starting to empower Associations with financial support. We have written to them for some financial support and we’re awaiting a response from them, and that will be ploughed into what we’re having here. If you ask me, the future for the sport looks very, very good under present leadership we have at AIBA.”

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