CHENNAI: India's boxing teams, both men and women, are set to participate in another competition in Europe. This time, it’s the prestigious Cologne Boxing World Cup from December 16 to 20 in Cologne. Both teams have been in Europe since October.
According to the Boxing Federation of India (BFI), the tour has been extended by a few more days. The teams are now expected to come back after the tournament in Cologne. Top boxers will be participating at the event.
The entire contingent (nine men and five women) reached Germany on Wednesday, with the event assuming significance for the women's pugilists especially as it will be their first competitive bouts since the lockdown in March. "We are ready for high-quality competitions," said BFI high-performance director, Santiago Nieva.
"We have trained for close to a month now in Italy and stepped up our performances since our arrival here, we had a good competition in France and then few friendlies in Italy and now a strong tournament in Germany. These exposure tournaments will ensure we are more competition ready and bring our players up-speed as far as our preparations for the Olympics are concerned."
Raffaele Bergamasco, head coach of the women's team, said they would strategise depending on the participating countries.
"We participate in this tournament to test the form of our athletes. It was not planned, but after a long period without competition, we decided to compete with good opponents. Tomorrow (Thursday) once we know the list of participating countries, we will work on the strategies for the tournament."