Olympic-aspiring boxers to compete in developmental championship from Friday
With Guyana set to participate in several Olympic qualifiers ahead of the 2024 Paris Games, the Guyana Boxing Association (GBA) will stage a senior developmental championship on Friday (January 26) at the National Gymnasium on Mandela Avenue which serves as part of the preparatory process.
The event, which is expected to feature representation from the Guyana Police Force, the Guyana Defence Force, the Forgotten Youth Foundation, and Rose Hall Town Jammers, will conduct its official weigh-in at the same location on Thursday.
The tournament is also expected to feature international flavour in the form of four Surinamese pugilists. Participation from Trinidad and Tobago is also being explored by the GBA.
Terrence Poole, Technical Director of the GBA, said, “This is an important event because it will provide valuable minutes in the ring for several of the elite boxers who have impending Olympic qualifiers and have not been competitively active. The event essentially caters to the elite boxers that have not been competing, and it’s also necessary because we didn’t get to run off the national open last year, and that was initially pencilled for this weekend.”
According to Poole, “We will not get the full complement of representatives from several gyms because of issues I would prefer not to disclose at this time. Some of our largest gyms are not inclined to field teams and after a meeting with all coaches and the GBA President, a decision was made. That’s why we opted against doing the Terrence Ali National Open and decided to host a developmental event.”
Meanwhile, Steve Ninvalle, GBA President, said, “While the decision to suspend the staging of the Terrence Ali National Open is unfortunate, the silver lining is the staging of another developmental programme that adds to the structured and systematic apparatus that is employed by the association in the advancement of its pugilists.”
Ninvalle explained, “This event serves as the start of our calendar of activities and initiatives, and in a similar vein to the previous year, 2024 is programmed to mirror and exceed the expectations and objectives set forth by our administration.”
“As an association, our emphasis will always remain on our nursery, which has provided us with the resources and human capital to dominate the English-speaking Caribbean. That is where the sustenance of boxing unquestionably occurs. However, our seniors are of great interest and importance as it provides a window into what can be achieved at the international stage when that transitional phase occurs from the junior realms,” the further added.