Klitschko Objects to Inclusion of Russian Boxers in WBA Rankings



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Klitschko Objects to Inclusion of Russian Boxers in WBA Rankings

There has been much debate over whether Russian athletes should be punished for the actions of the Russian government, especially in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Russian athletes like Fedor Emelianenko argue that it is unfair for athletes who have nothing to do with state politics to suffer consequences in their careers, while Ukrainian boxing champion Vladimir Klitschko advocates for sanctions against Russian athletes.

The recent agreement between the International Boxing Association (IBA), led by Russian businessman Umar Kremlev, and the World Boxing Association (WBA) has been met with criticism from Klitschko. ‘Within IBA, We are building a Global home of boxing.

The cooperation between IBA and WBA can provide the future of boxing as a sport, our goal is to build the bridge between the two organizations and give more opportunities to all boxers worldwide,’ IBA President said.

‘This agreement with IBA is something that will bring many benefits to boxing. I have always had the slogan that Boxing is One and being able to bring the most important entity of professional boxing closer to the most outstanding of amateur boxing is a huge step towards achieving our goals and integrating this great sport,’ Gilberto Jesús Mendoza said during the meeting.

Klitschko objects to Russian and Belarusian boxers in WBA rankings

“Boxing needs more transparency, not more greed,” said Klitschko. “The collaboration between WBA and IBA [International Boxing Association, formerly AIBA] is a stain on the coat of the noble art.

“The decision to reinstate Russian and Belarusian boxers is an indelible moral fault. It is no coincidence that the IOC [International Olympic Committee] persists in excluding boxing from the 2028 Olympic Games. Boxing needs one big clean-up”.

The WBA leadership soon clarified the reason why Russian and Belarusian boxers will no longer be left out of their rankings. “The World Boxing Association (WBA), through its Championships Committee and Ratings Committee, issued a statement in which it decided to reinstate Russian and Belarusian boxers to their place in the rankings,” they said.

“The athletes from this country are not soldiers or part of the government. Therefore, they have nothing to do with the war against Ukraine. “However, it was determined that any fighter who speaks out in favor of the war or is involved in it will be removed immediately”.