(Reuters) - Following a hugely popular debut at the London Olympics in August, women’s boxing has been included in the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, the sports organizers said.
The Commonwealth Games Federation had made the decision at their general assembly meeting in Uganda shortly after the London Games, the International Boxing Association (AIBA) said.
“This inclusion demonstrates the continued growth in popularity of women’s boxing that I wish to continue promoting even further,” AIBA president Dr Ching-Kuo Wu said in a statement.
“Women boxers have reached world-class levels over the last couple of years and the Commonwealth Games will be another opportunity for these athletes to showcase their talents.”
The women competing in Scotland will fight for three gold medals in flyweight (50 kilogram‘s), lightweight (60 kg) and middleweight (75 kg). Weight categories for the men’s tournament have yet to be fixed, but 10 gold medals were on offer at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi.
It will be the first time women’s boxing has been included in the Games, held every four years for more than 70 countries, mostly of the former British Empire.
Prior to London, women’s boxing had been criticized by many in the sport, including the hugely successful amateur boxing nation of Cuba, who said it was not appropriate for women.
But the all-out attacking displays at the Games drew huge acclaim and won over many critics as Britain’s Nicola Adams, Ireland’s Katie Taylor and American Claressa Shields took the first Olympic gold medals in front of sell-out crowds.
Wu said he would push the International Olympic Committee for at least six weight categories for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.
The men’s boxing tournament featured 10 gold medals at London, down from 11 at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Reporting by Patrick Johnston in Singapore; Editing by Ian Ransom