All 16 teams have announced the names of the boxers who will compete in the World Series of Boxing (WSB) Season V with over 520 names confirmed.
Each team will consist of at least 20 boxers, including such renown names as Michael Conlan of Italia Thunder, Joseph Joyce of British Lionhearts, Cam F. Awesome of USA Knockouts, Xuanxuan Wang of China Dragons and Marvin Cabrera of Mexico Guerreros.
British Lionheart’s first bout will take place in London on Thursday, 15th January against China Dragons. Mexico Guerreros will face Ukraine Otamans on 16th January in Kyiv. Italia Thunder will take on Azerbaijan Baku Fires in Baku on 17th of January, while USA Knockouts will face Argentina Condors in Buenos Aires on the same day.
WSB is the only Global Team Boxing competition where national teams go head to head in a league format. Developed by the International Boxing Association (AIBA), this unique competition brings together the best Olympic and national boxers in an exciting team format with worldwide appeal. Season V sees 16 teams compete in two groups of 8 with the top 3 teams qualifying for play offs.
The boxers compete without vests or headguards in five three-minute rounds. There are five bouts per match and scoring is through the 10-Point-Must-System.
Season V sees the introduction of three new franchises – Morocco, Venezuela and Puerto Rico – as well as the return of two boxing powerhouses, China and Great Britain. Cuba, the reigning champions are joined with Russia, Mexico and Great Britain in Group A. Group B sees former champions Italy and Kazakhstan pitted against the US, Argentina and Azerbaijan.
As WSB boxers retain their Olympic eligibility, the road to Rio 2016 Olympic Games also begins in earnest with a quota of 17 places up for grabs through the competition, the first time so many boxers can qualify via WSB. Categories from 52kg to 81kg will be granted two quotas each, while 49kg, 91kg and +91kg will each be granted one quota.