European Olympic boxing qualification event returning to London in April – BBC Sport




Galal Yafai attained his Olympic place before the European Olympic boxing qualification event was suspended

The European Olympic boxing qualification event will return to London in April, 13 months after it ended early because of coronavirus.

Galal Yafai and Peter McGrail were the only British boxers able to attain Olympic places at the original competition, after reaching their respective quarter-finals.

They will return to complete their events, while 10 other GB boxers, including world champion Lauren Price, will look to secure places at the delayed Tokyo Games themselves.

‘It’s great to have a date and know it’s coming back to the UK,” Price told BBC Sport.

“It’s been a dream of mine to go to the Olympics since I was eight years old and I was in the form of my life when it was cancelled.

“I was devastated when that was taken away, but I’m glad it’s back in London because we know the venue, the hotels and don’t have to travel which is always an advantage.”

GB Boxing performance director Rob McCracken also welcomed the announcement which he insists will be of “great” benefit to the GB team.

“After a period of uncertainty it has given all of the boxers a goal to aim towards and we’ll be working hard to make sure they’re in the best possible shape for the qualifier.”

The event will run from 22-26 April and as a precautionary measure, organisers expect it will take place behind-closed-doors with no spectators present at the Copper Box Arena on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

“I’m sure they’ll do (Covid-19) tests and we’re at such a high level of elite sport that I’m sure everything will be safe,” said Price.

Team-mate Yafai added; “We want to fight and represent our country but the main thing is for it to be safe and I’m confident it will be.”

One hundred and seventy-six of the original 450 European boxers remain in the competition with 77 Olympic qualification places still available across eight male and five female divisions.

GB squad for the European Olympic boxing qualifier:

Women:

Flyweight (51kg) – Charley Davison

Featherweight (57kg) – Karriss Artingstall

Lightweight (50kg) – Caroline Dubois

Welterweight (69kg) – Rosie Eccles

Middleweight (75kg) – Lauren Price

Men:

Flyweight (52kg) – Galal Yafai

Featherweight (57kg) – Peter McGrail

Light-welterweight (63kg) – Luke McCormack

Welterweight (69kg) – Pat McCormack

Middleweight (75kg) – Lewis Richardson

Light-heavyweight (81kg) – Ben Whittaker

Heavyweight (91kg) – Cheavon Clarke

Super-heavyweight (91kg+) – Frazer Clarke