New Delhi, March 1 (IANS) With the aim to further advance the training programme for boxers, the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) on Wednesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Sports Authority of India (SAI)under which an International Boxing Academy will be set up with eight regional centres.

The agreement was signed in the presence of Secretary of Sports and SAI Director General Injeti Srinivas.

The signing authorities included International Boxing Association (AIBA) President Dr. Ching-Kuo Wu, BFI President Ajay Singh and Roque Dias, Executive Director (Special Projects), SAI.

According to the MoU, the BFI will look after the day-to-day functioning of the academy while SAI will build the state-of-the-art facility. AIBA will extend its support in terms of providing its vast knowledge and expertise in training methodology and technical know how.

Earlier in the day, BFI President Singh announced that the first ever franchise-based Indian Boxing League (IBL) will most likely be held by the end of the year.

Singh also announced that India is planning to host one major tournament every year in the run-up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, starting with the women’s Youth World Championships in November 2017.

“We will be starting our own boxing league later this year and it will be a great opportunity for our boxers with respect to finances and exposure,” Singh said after the successful conclusion of the AIBA’s 71st commission meeting here.

“The women’s Youth World Championships will be a great opportunity for the Indian boxers as they will be able to compete in such a huge event and it will also help in our preparations for Tokyo 2020,” he added.

“This is just the beginning of our plans as we wish to host one major event every year and our boxers will also be taking part in the 2017 World Series Boxing competition.”

This was the first time that the AIBA commission’s meeting was held in India and the chairpersons from 11 commissions of AIBA attended the event to discuss the future of world boxing.

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