Boxing 2021 Tokyo| Special Episode | Talkin’ Fight
IABA. IOC. Stranja, Bulgaria 72nd International Boxing Tournament update, plus Zimbabwe. Governing bodies, and Olympic standards. Join us on our on-going exploration of the Olympics, to be held in Tokyo 2021, featuring Christian from the Friday Night Panel, and the route to the ring. Watch TalkinFight weekdays at 12, 4, 7, and 8:30pm EST on YouTube or LIVE at talkinfight.com/live @Olympic @IOC Media @Abroad in Japan
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A fuser, hello, everyone welcome to talk and fight and another olympic episode featuring christian from the friday night panel and his ongoing series on what changes are being made and who we might expect to see at the olympics in the boxing circle square circle.
What do you got christian more of a ring than anything else, graham more of a ring, what they call the squared circle, the circle squared or something? Well, i’m not kidding fair enough well continuing on with our ongoing conversation about olympic qualifiers and uh.
The extra importance now being placed on other tournaments uh as a pathway to the olympic podium we’ve seen summer.
We have seen some early movement in the strange memorial cup, which we mentioned yesterday uh, but, as i mentioned, the semis aren’t going to be taking place until uh friday and we’re going to get into the details a little bit more later in the week.
Nevertheless, a couple of notable uh early date – uh i mean it could have been guessing some obvious successes from some obvious corners early on irish boxers, kelly, harrington and michaela walsh, both boxed their way through to the last 32 uh world champion kara uh harrington recorded unanimous Uh five-nothing victory over the polish fighter, anita ragelska uh to progress in the 60 kilogram category.
Well, the 2018 european bronze medalist walsh went through on a split decision beating will dead bertral of mauritius four to one in the 57 kilogram.
However, uh former world champion kelly harrington was beaten in the quarterfinals today uh in the quarterfinals of the lightweight division.
The dubliner lost a 4-1 split decision to russia’s nunes azatarian harrington was clearly not happy with the decision, but had little option but but to accept, even though she consistently landed scoring punches during the three-round contest.
It was uh the russians all-action style, which caught the attention of the four judges at the end of the day who awarded her the first two rounds.
Uh harrington did win the uh final round on all three cards.
It should be noted, but it wasn’t enough to turn around the results.
At that point.
The inconsistency of the judging, though, was illustrated by the fact that one of the ringside officials had marked the contest 30 to 27 in harrington’s favor, while the other four sided 29-28.
With the russian as harrington didn’t get an opportunity to fight at the now rescheduled european qualifiers in london last march uh.
This was the first time she was stepping into the ring in more than a year.
So it’s a big upset for the irish there, graham uh, but i say we’re gon na – follow the strategy a little more later in the week, uh moving away from strategy for a moment and remembering that this isn’t the only tournament uh prior to the olympics.
I came across a story this morning out of zimbabwe uh, where, as a nice change of pace from what we’ve been talking about lately, i look so we actually found an example of the local government stepping up to actually help its athletes out, which is nice to Hear uh the zimbabwe olympic committee uh has now come to the officially come to the aid of the zimbabwe boxing federation, offering to pay airfares for three of the boxers and two coaches as they travel to the final tokyo olympic qualifiers.
So the zimbabwe and boxers uh hopes of participating in the final olympic qualifiers that were set for june and france obviously were ruined like everyone else is when the organizers decided to cancel that event.
Local boxers that failed to secure an olympic ticket at the african boxing qualification tournament last year will now have to compete in at least three tournaments to score the point to score enough points to improve their rankings in hopes of getting a tokyo berth, uh the zimbabwe Boxing federation yesterday said it was waiting for clearance from the sports and recreation commission to send the boxers, with the department of potential to qualify for the tokyo olympic games to three regional competitions.
So arvayan mate, the zimbabwe uh boxing federation secretary general, said that plans are in motion for at least four boxers to trade, leather in botswana, zambia and mozambique before may uh.
He was quoted as saying the problem uh we had is that one of our uh one of our best boxers uh.
You have to give me a second here on this pronunciation, graham uh and bellezzi pury in the bestly again you’ll have to look this one up, guys uh.
My apologies on the pronunciation here he’s an african flyweight champion is who he is, and he had his qualifications ruined for the olympics and nullified when it was decided that the rankings were only gon na be used from 2017 forward, which dropped him out of the top.
Three position, so that means along with some of the hopefuls uh, they were hoping to participate.
Uh in at least now we’re gon na have to go through at least three regional tournaments before those final rankings are taken into account in may so at least three they’re gon na have to go to on this one.
So our friends in zimbabwe aren’t giving up hope just yet uh on olympic glory, so we’re gon na have to keep an ear to the ground for follow-ups on this one.
As more of these regional tournaments start to crop up and take place, but at least it shows that you know not everybody’s given up grant people are starting to uh think outside of the typical path and they’re trying to get their boxers to these regionals.
To these continentals to these international tournaments in hopes of getting these ranking numbers up so we’ll have to see how that goes moving forward.
Obviously, things are moving along in most most currently in bulgaria in sofia, at the stranger tournament and as the quarterfinals are taking place today and tomorrow, friday uh, the olympic channel is going to be broadcasting.
So, if you’re up first thing in the morning between 6 and 10 uh, this is when you’re gon na start seeing those uh those fights live on the olympic channel.
So that’s gon na be worth checking out and they’re gon na be handling the semi-final coverage and obviously into the finals happening.
I believe on saturday saturday or sunday, sunday, cool yeah yeah are you with? Can you hear me, graham, you did you’re fine, you keep stopping and i don’t know if you’re stopping for me to say something or you’re just catching your breath.
And, oh you know, you know me if you don’t go, i’m just going to keep ranting and rambling here.
You know uh, but yeah.
I’M kind of thrilled that the rest of the boxing world is kind of starting to look away from these large qualifiers and we’re starting to see stories cropping up about these regionals and some of these smaller tournaments that we wouldn’t necessarily wouldn’t have necessarily got the same Amount of coverage or uh as the amount of importance placed upon them in past years, so some added prestige yep.
I noted uh a few names.
I sent them to you just for your consideration, uh.
But what was interesting about the names i sent was the various countries that they’re from uh, because you don’t often hear of these other countries who have let alone boxers, but an actual organization that can regulate boxing within their country and yet they’re capable of sending their Fighters to the olympics, so i sent along a few names uh and found it’s pretty interesting.
That among the british female fighters is a welsh fighter by name amir uh, mary uh, not forgot her name, but anyway.
It was interesting that uh, the british, really think that, among all their fighters, male and female among their top contenders for a goal, is a female fighter, so uh anyway, just just little tidbits.
I was catching in the news this morning and uh yeah.
I definitely saw just before we came on.
Uh came online today i saw that you sent a few names by uh and you know it’s.
You know we’re looking at uh.
You know countries like cuba, we’re looking at uh the uzbeks we’re looking at the kazakhstanis, and these are.
These are countries that do have fairly well developed, uh, boxing programs, and here in north america we don’t necessarily hear as much as we might out of uh countries that were former soviet uh republics such as you know, the kazakhstan uzbeks the georgians places like that.
But these guys are have long history in boxing and a lot of that gets overshadowed because a lot of those early successes, uh from when you’ve, really started paying attention to the numbers in boxing get attributed to the ussr and the soviet or the soviet union.
As opposed to national pride, where maybe it should be placed in you know in uzbekistan in kazakhstan and georgia, because these guys do have incredible boxing programs and have been putting out phenomenal fighters for a long time now, yeah, that’s what i noticed: uh just the diversity Of the countries uh, they were are going to be represented at the olympics, who are fighting for top tier positions: gold, silver, bronze uh, and i just thought it was interesting that, among this, the british uh they’re they’re, counting on a woman, a young lady to to Take gold counting on i say, but not that it’s guaranteed given the competition so anyway, i just thought i’d.
Send you a few names in a few countries and uh.
It was just that more of a wow.
I did not know that, but yeah we’ll definitely take a look into it.
Any new stories popping up about any of those any of the names that you sent over i’ll keep an ear to the ground for as well yeah i mean we generally look at the cubans, the americans, the russians, maybe the easter germans in general, those kinds of Countries, but if you take a deeper dive into the world of olympic boxing, you’ll see how these other countries pop up as contenders going into the olympics, how they fare at the olympics is another story.
But it is interesting to watch these.
Well, not the qualifiers, but now these tournaments that are going on where these other boxers are being quite prominent in in and victorious so it’ll, be interesting to see going forward, just as a fan uh watching how this plays out uh towards the the july games in Tokyo, i’m excited, i think i think it’s cool the way it’s working out.
I’M glad i’m glad actually they’re they’re diffusing uh uh the qualifiers, if you will and allowing if you will to release that pressure on the boxers when they go to a major event and maybe spread out that pressure a little bit.
And that’s my maybe, where we’re seeing some success from these other uh younger nations or uh nations that uh we we might not consider as developed but yet have an incredible history and probably are very developed in their programming.
You can always kind of see.
You know both sides of that argument if, if this had been gone on based on rankings from day one and there was no actual specific qualifying continental events going hey if you win this event, you’re guaranteed a spot if that had been scrapped into in favor of Just rankings based on you know, regionals internationals, continentals things like that, just over the last several years as a whole, and they were doing that right across the board.
Then it could be argued that it was more of a democratic process.
And then you could really say this has been diffused.
The biggest problem that we’re having right now is the fact that we’ve had two successful qualifiers and two that are still up in the air.
So, at the end of the day, these extra 53 uh spots that are going to be allocated by ranking someone who might be sitting in that rank going yep, i’m guaranteed a spot right now might decide.
No i’m just not going to fight at this olympic qualifier.
For the americas, because i’m already guaranteed a spot uh, so it’s going to change how some people are doing this, so it’s not as democratic, because the people who in who fought in africa the people who fought in asia oceania – that’s already been decided at this point.
In time, whereas, now that this system’s been changed halfway through fighters and europe and fighters in north america can take us, take a step back and take a look at their rankings and do the math prior and go do i really need to leave it all? You know in the ring uh this this upcoming qualifier.
No, i can play it safe.
I can focus on my training on different aspects of my training and they’re kind of given.
At this point, i don’t want to say an unfair advantage, but they definitely they’re they’re walking into this, with more options ahead of them than the uh people fighting out of africa or asia oceania right so moving forward next year or as we look forward once the Olympics are done.
The next big one that we’ve mentioned a couple times will be probably the commonwealth games in birmingham 2022 july, so we’ll be taking a look to see what they do with their qualification tournaments and things like that.
Moving forward based on what happens here because they’re starting from scratch right now, we haven’t had the qualification tournaments.
Yet so, if we see that this model works, if it’s applied right across the board great or we’re going to see if it falls on its face, if we kind of try to do this from day one, but it’s the fact that it’s kind of being implemented Halfway through this qualification process, that’s what’s throwing everybody right now, well, keeping in mind too, when the actual qualified boxers get to tokyo.
Is it then, a toss of the coin as to who they’re fighting first day, one because they have some like five fights within several days, which is well it’s going to depend on where you’re seated as well so yeah.
So, just because you’re from mauritius, you might end up fighting the top ranked fellow in the world, see well, the top frag fellow in the world could turn out to be from mauritius.
One of these.
Yes, yes, yes, i i realize that, but you see what i’m saying i i know, no matter how fair it all becomes.
At the end of the day, you’re still going to have top-ranked fighters going against guys with either lesser experience.
Less training well you’re always going to have the experience issue because you do get people coming into the olympics, who are fighting are only you know.
uh, obviously we talked a little bit earlier in the week uh or last week might have been about how some of these young fighters are now being disqualified, because their earlier rankings aren’t going to count as they’re, not taking into account youth rankings.
At this point in time, right but uh, but that being said, it’s you’re always going to have experience gaps.
I mean you get guys in their 30s still fighting at the olympics, and this could be your third or fourth olympics uh versus you know your first or second olympics and part of that is going to play into things like nerves.
First time you set foot in the olympic village first time you, you know your first time on the olympic stage.
Nerves are going to get to you if it’s your fourth olympic tournament, the 20th time you stepped into the ring in an olympic setting kind of thing.
You’Re going to be a lot calmer, you’re going to be a lot uh, just more put together a lot more focused on your tactics and things like that, as opposed to your you know, being dazzled by your immediate surroundings.
Right and i think that’s what’s going to help balance off this olympics because there won’t be because remember, there was a boxer that came on one of our panels and he was saying he was ready to go but come olympic day.
He goes into the ring and he’s like, oh and the psychology of it all is is how he described his loss.
I mean he was just simply in awe of what was going on around him and wasn’t really focused on the fate itself and lost the faith and thus his chance at winning a medal yeah and as well.
You know we’ve heard from a couple of boxers that we’ve talked to that they really don’t remember their fights all that.
Well, they might remember one combination or one hit, or you know, taking one particular uh hit or something like that.
But the fight as a whole is mostly a blur to these guys, uh, because you’re just so focused on the moment in the moment oh yeah and you have to be otherwise you get your bell rung pretty quickly here.
So a lot of these guys come back and they said they have to watch their fights afterwards to figure out what the hell happened.
How did i lose? I there’s no way i lost that on points and you go back and you watch me go oh yeah.
There it is oh yeah yeah, i didn’t see that one and so the psychology of it very much you can get dazzled by the lights.
You know the crowds, especially if it’s a hometown versus you know or if you’re fighting someone from the hometown crowd kind of thing.
Obviously, that’s gon na be less of an issue with this olympics with uh, no with no fans and those people who are spectating being asked not to scream cheer and sing, but rather to just uh, clap their hands and stomp their feet as it would be.
So this you know from a psychological standpoint, it’s going to be a little different, these games in general, but you’re always going to come across that experience, uh gap.
So do you happen to know if there’s any olympic tournaments, like the one going on in bulgaria right now in america, right now happening well, nothing this week that i’m that i’m aware of uh there’s no big aiba tournaments, that i’m aware of because the professionals are Now going at it um with crowds, apparently i think this weekend is the first weekend: they’ll have crowds in the audience at the professional level.
So i’m just curious in the us, depending on what state you’re in there obviously, and they don’t have much of a national strategy when it comes to covid so, depending on what state different things are happening in you’re, going to see either them welcoming people in with Open arms into the stadiums or you’re going to see uh fans allowed, but at limited capacity with social distancing, implemented or you’re, going to see like what we saw on the tyson pillow fight where you’ve got nobody in the stands, blacked out, uh auditorium and just you Know spotlights on the ring and that and that’s what we’re seeing most recently with professional fights, whether they’re held in a casino or a rented hall uh.
You know nobody in the stands, with the exception of the people who are working at the facility or for the event uh, but but i’m just curious um, whether you had noticed um amateur tournaments, taking place in the americas.
Now now that, obviously, certain restrictions are being lifted, uh for these professional events uh well, i haven’t seen there’s no large internationals happening at this exact moment in the in the us or anywhere else in the americas uh as we’re as we speak right now, but let Me take a look into the uh, the aiba schedule and we’ll go from there and take a look and see what’s coming up, because i’m sure that uh we’re gon na be looking to see these guys are going to be looking to get as much uh.
Not only exposure but as much uh, you know time in with the leather as they can right moving towards uh tokyo.
At this point, because you know we saw world champion losing a quarterfinal katie harrington just today.
First time, she’s had a chance to step in the ring in a year so and – and that does play not only on a psychological level but just on a physical level on a physical conditioning level.
So we’re going to be seeing you know, fighters from all across the americas and europe trying to get into as many of these competitions as they can running up to it, especially those who are still hoping to uh improve their rankings in case they do have a Poor showing at the uh rescheduled americas tournament yeah, i i would just have to imagine that there are efforts underway to begin scheduling, amateur events to warm up boxers across the americas, uh as they are doing in africa.
As you pointed out, and europe, as you pointed out, i’m and because asia ocean is already taken care of so now, i’m just curious.
I’M just curious whether we can do some research and have a look at the americas per se, because there may be some running under the radar if you will um that are specifically set up for the amateurs.
Well, that’s true: we don’t.
We don’t always hear as much as we could uh.
We obviously hear the most about amateur sport in general, every four years when an olympics comes around so well the uh.
You know well, there’s lots of uh information being poured into the pool now’s the time to uh to get in there and take a look around so i’ll.
Definitely take a look into that for you and see what we can find for the americas for tomorrow.
Then yeah thanks a lot uh was that what you had for today, i’m just curious.
I interrupted and completely sent you down a different little track there.
Oh no, that was it you just we’re talking a little bit more still, uh.
You know just our coverage of.
What’S going on in uh in sofia right now at the strania tournament – and i said a little story out of zimbabwe today made me feel good that the government’s actually stepping in and releasing funds trying to help some amateur boxers get to some regionals in hopes of Qualifying for the games right on good stuff, as opposed to what happened to our friends in nigeria, where they didn’t release the funds and now they’re not going to the games this country as big and as proud as nigeria, given its boxing history blows me away.
What did it say, red tape, red tape? It went across a bureaucrat’s desk and that’s all there was to it anyway, west africa, but anyway, all right.
Thanks very much christian appreciate your input and uh thanks very much your good viewership for taking the time to listen in today, um like share subscribe and if you are subscribed, remember to ring that bell for notifications, and i will see you tomorrow have a good one.