EXPLAINER: Boxing at Tokyo Olympics
Things to know about the boxing competition at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics:
THE ABSOLUTE BASICS
- The fighters compete over three rounds lasting three minutes with the winner decided on points by five judges using a similar system to professional boxing.
- Boxers can also win bouts through a knockout, if the referee stops the fight or through the disqualification of their opponent.
- Fighters compete in divisions according to weight from the lightest, flyweight, to the heaviest, super-heavyweight.
- The winner of the final receives a gold medal, the loser silver, while bronze medals go to both losing semi-finalists.
- The competition will be organized by the Olympic Boxing Task Force after the International Boxing Association (AIBA) was suspended due to “concerns over finance, governance, ethics and refereeing and judging”.
- Professionals were allowed to compete in Olympic boxing for the first time at the 2016 Rio Games.
HOW MANY MEDALS?
There are eight gold medals for men and five in the women’s tournament.
WHAT HAPPENED IN RIO?
Uzbekistan and Cuba topped the medals table with three golds each but questions over the quality of judging overshadowed the tournament, with Irish and U.S. boxers protesting they had been “robbed” in quarterfinal fights. AIBA removed some judges and referees from the Games.
In the second Olympic women’s tournament, Britain’s Nicola Adams and American Claressa Shields retained the titles they had won in London.
WHAT CAN WE EXPECT IN TOKYO?
The Uzbeks and Cubans will again bring strong men’s squads to Tokyo with contenders in most divisions.
With Adams and Shields not competing and the number of women’s divisions increased from three to five, Tokyo could witness the first female Olympic champion from outside the United States and Europe.
Four Filipino boxers–Eumir Marcial, Carlo Paalam, Nesty Petecio and Irish Magno–will be fighting for a chance to give the country an elusive gold medal.
The first Olympic medals in the women’s featherweight and welterweight divisions will be awarded in Tokyo.
OLYMPICS BOXING SCHEDULE
July 24 to August 8.
WHERE IS IT HAPPENING?
Kokugikan Arena, an indoor venue usually used for sumo tournaments.
HOW DID WE GET HERE?
Boxing featured in the Ancient Olympics but the foundation for the modern sport came in 1867 when it was codified under the Marquess of Queensberry Rules.
The sport has been a part of the modern Olympics since the St Louis Games in 1904, although Swedish law forbad it at the 1912 Stockholm Games. Women’s boxing was introduced at London 2012.
WELL FANCY THAT
Ingemar Johansson, the big-hitting Swede who beat Floyd Patterson to win the world heavyweight crown in 1959, was disqualified from the 1952 Olympic final for “passivity” after spending two rounds back-pedaling. He had to wait 30 years before he received his heavyweight silver medal in 1982.