Thapa, Sangwan Could Join United States Team in WSB

By Nitin Sharma

At the National Camp at NIS, Patiala, boxers Shiva Thapa and Sumit Sangwan would often talk about the World Series of Boxing , a semi-professional league started by the AIBA in 2010, with their team-mates Akhil Kumar and Mandeep Jangra — boxers who were part of the Mumbai Tigers franchise in the WSB in the 2010 and 2011 seasons. Chances for Indian boxers to take part in the WSB took a hit when the Mumbai franchise pulled out after the end of 2011.

Almost two years later, Thapa, the reigning Asian champion, and Sangwan, a quarterfinalist at the World Championships, have been offered contracts for the Team USA Knockouts to play in the 56 kg and 81 kg categories respectively, for the rest of the season.

With the Indian Boxing Federation being banned by the AIBA, it was their management firm, Angelican Medal Hunt Company, which forwarded their names to WSB manager Mariana Caballero. The boxers received the contracts last week.

Thapa, who became the Asian Champion earlier this year and also reached the quarter-finals in the World Championship held in October in Kazakhstan, was eagerly waiting for this chance.

"It's a opportunity which we have been thinking about for the last two years. Not having a home team in WSB did hurt our chances but we are happy that a chance has come our way. The USA Knockouts team has still five matches to go in the season," Thapa said. "We have started weight training accordingly, since WSB sees five rounds of boxing. The sparring and boxing rounds have been doubled."

The USA knockouts are currently placed in Group A along with Algeria, Argentina, Germany, Italy and Ukraine, and have three boxers, Steven Fulton, Castelon Martinez and Edwin Sandowal, all of USA, in the 56 kg category and two boxers, Osmar Bravo of Nicargua and Geremias Torres of USA, in the 81 kg category.

Sangwan, who lost to world number one Adilbek Niyazymbetov of Kazakhstan at the world championship, believes that spending time with renowned Cuban coach Pedro Roque, who was AIBA coach of the year in 2008, will benefit his game ahead of next year's CWG and Asian Games, apart from strengthening their chances for Rio.

"I have been training with heavyweight boxers Praveen Kumar and others at the national camp in preparation for the WSB. The contract has come at a short notice and we will need some time to adjust to weather conditions in USA, " the 20-year-old Sangwan said. "Roque has been a phenomenal coach for Cuba and eight of his trainees reached the semifinals at the Beijing Olympics. Both me and Thapa will be playing in our usual weight categories and that will work in our favour."

National coach GS Sandhu believes that the stint with the USA team will be beneficial.

"This opportunity will provide both Shiva and Sumit to play against some of the world's best. They have to lay emphasis on endurance and they also need to be protective of injuries. Since its a five-round format, they have to be economical in their movements. Playing in USA will boost their confidence," Sandhu explained.

The boxers are expected to join the team in the USA for the match against Argentina Condors on January 10.

Tags: Amateur Boxing image  
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Post a Comment - View More User Comments (0)
Top Headlines Kal Yafai Wins, Faces Luis Concepcion on 12/10 in Manchester Sean Davis Edges Paul Economides For WBC Regional Title Hisashi Amagasa Wins Ten Round Decision Over Carlo Demecilo David Price: I Can Knock Joshua Out, Dropped Him Bad in Sparring Lemieux's Manager Confident Canelo Fight Can Be Made For May Luis Nery Looks To Take His Career To Next Level in Tijuana Hekkie Budler Aims To Bounce Back at Kempton Park Josh Taylor Continues To Rise By Drilling Dave Ryan in Edinburgh Magdaleno on Track To Make 122-Pounds For Donaire Title Shot Hassan N'Dam Aims To Revamp Career, Hires Pedro Diaz Shane Mosley: I'm Semi-Retired - But For Right Opponent I'll Fight! For Better or Worse, Heavyweight Glory Still Runs Through Klitschko Golovkin's Coach: Mayweather Deserves Catch-Weight, NOT Canelo! Frank Warren: Klitschko Does NOT Deserve Shot at WBA Title! What To Do With Tyson Fury? - BoxingScene Ratings Update Arum Explains Manny Pacquiao's Lack of Knockouts Since 2009 McGuigan: Frampton Will Make an Impact in Vegas With Santa Cruz Golovkin Warns Saunders: I Want Your Belt, That is My Goal! Joe Hanks, Denis Douglin Return To Action on November 5 Manny Pacquiao Gets in One Last Workout Before Leaving To LA Hearn: I 100% Want Anthony Joshua vs. David Haye in 2017 Parker vs. Ruiz: Duco Looking For Goverment Funding For Event Jean Pascal Not Yet Ready For Ring Return, Says Trainer Photo: Victor Terrazas, Eduardo Hernandez on Weight For War Vargas: It's My Time, After I Beat Pacquiao - A Star Will Be Born! Erislandy Lara Still Has a Target on The Back of Gennady Golovkin Photos: Luis Nery, Richie Mepranum Set For War in Tijuana Joselito Velasquez, Mexican Olympian, To Be Trained By Robles Wladimir Klitschko, Lucas Browne Far Apart On Money For 12/10 Photos: Canelo is Officially Belted in Puerto Rico By The WBO Cotto Says Canelo Rematch is a Subject For Discussion Danny Williams Returns, Faces Ali Eren Demirezen in Hamburg Edis Tatli Takes on Manuel Lancia on December 17 Canelo vs. Saunders Showdown Fully Backed By WBO Prez Weights: David Lemieux, Cristian Fabian Rios Ready To Fight Eggington Predicts Damage: I'm Going To Do a Job on Gavin Jeff Horn Ready For IBF Strap: 100%, Bring on Errol Spence! Hooker Plans on Testing Perez's Chin Early on Kovalev vs. Ward Marin, Pintor Make Weight For Boxeo Telemundo Season Finale Photo: Micki Nielsen, Kevin Lerena Ready For Battle

Latest Active Forum Threads