Equality for Female Boxers in the Olympics

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USA Olympic Committee Team Selection
by Julie Goldsticker
November 9, 2010


(COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO.) – USA Boxing’s male athlete selection procedures for the upcoming 2012 Olympic Games have been approved by the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) Team Selection Working Group. The Olympic selection procedures dictate the road each male athlete must navigate in order to earn a berth on the 2012 Olympic Team.

Eight boxers in each of the 10 men’s weight classes will compete in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Boxing, pending the results of the World Series of Boxing individual championships. The first Olympic Trials qualifying event took place in October with 10 male boxers earning berths at the National PAL Championships in San Antonio. There will be four additional qualifying events, pending each of the tournaments fully adhering to USA Boxing’s rules and regulations. The four remaining qualifying tournaments are the: Armed Forces Championships (Feb. 14-19, 2011, Lackland Air Force Base, Texas), the USA Boxing National Championships (March 20-27, 2011, Colorado Springs, Colo.), the National Golden Gloves Championships (April 24-30, 2011, Indianapolis, Ind.), and the Last Chance Qualifier (June 2011, location TBD). Should any of the qualifying tournaments fail to follow USA Boxing’s rules, the eighth and final spot will be determined at the Last Chance Qualifier.

The top four finishers or semifinalists from the USA Boxing National Championships will all earn a spot in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials as well as claiming a top four seed based upon their finish at the event. The Last Chance Qualifier will only be open to athletes who have not previously earned a position in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials.

The U.S. Olympic Team Trials will be a double elimination tournament with the champion in the winners’ bracket facing the victor in the challengers’ bracket in the finals. If the winners’ bracket champion earns a victory in that bout, he is the U.S. Olympic Team Trials Champion. Should the challengers bracket champion win the final round bout, they will compete a second time with the winner of the second bout determining the U.S. Olympic Team Trials Champion.

In addition to the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Boxing, there is a second qualifying event for boxers throughout the world. The five individual champions from the World Series of Boxing (WSB), a new International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA) initiative, will earn automatic berths into the 2012 Olympic Games. As the WSB weight classes differ from the 10 Olympic weight divisions, the boxer must inform AIBA and USA Boxing which weight class he will represent at the 2012 Olympic Games. As dictated by AIBA’s Olympic qualifying guidelines, should a U.S. boxer win a WSB individual championship, his weight class will not be contested at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials.

All of the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Boxing champions must then qualify internationally to earn a berth in the 2012 Olympics. The first international qualifier will be the 2011 World Boxing Championships (September 16-October 1, 2011, Busan, Korea) with the top 10 finishers in the light flyweight – light heavyweight divisions and the top six boxers in the heavyweight and super heavyweight classes all earning Olympic berths. The remaining Olympic spots will be determined by the 2012 Americas Qualifying Event in 2012, and the Americas have a total of 54 spots in the 10 weight divisions. The slots not claimed through the WSB and World Championships will be up for grabs at the Americas Qualifying tournament.

The 2012 Olympic Games will mark the Olympic debut of women’s boxing with 12 boxers from around the globe competing in each of the three Olympic weight divisions (flyweight/112 lbs, lightweight/132 lbs, middleweight/165 lbs) for a total of 36 female athletes. The 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for women will take place in early 2012 prior to the lone international qualifier, the Women’s World Championships in May of 2012.

USA Boxing, as the national governing body for Olympic-style boxing, is the United States’ member organization of the International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA) and a member of the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).

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