The Andhra Pradesh Boxing Association will host the 56th Senior National boxing championship for men at the Saroornagar indoor stadium in Hyderabad from October 25 to November 1.

In a press release Mr. B.D. Man Mohan, secretary of APBA, stated that about 280 boxers from across the country including World No. 1 and Beijing Olympics bronze medallist Vijender Singh, Olympian Akhil Kumar and other internationals will be seen in action.

Besides the various State teams, the Institution teams like the All India Railway Sports Board, All India Electricity Board, Assam Rifles and All India Police will also take part in the event. About 150 officials of the All India Boxing Federation will also be involved.

Selection event

The Nationals assume significance as they are going to be the selection event for respective State teams for the next edition of the National Games to be held in Jharkhand.

“The national selectors will also keep a close watch on the performances in the Nationals as part of the preparations for the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi,” B.D. Man Mohan stated. “By hosting this Senior Nationals, we hope the sport will get the desired fillip in our region and the youngsters who have been doing really well in the Junior Nationals will go on to excel in the higher grades.”

The last time the Nationals was conducted in AP was in 1999 in Vizag. APBA also hosted the Senior nationals for women in Vizag in 2006, Junior and Sub-junior nationals for women in Kakinada (2005) and the Junior nationals for men in Warangal (2004).

Listing AP’s performance in the boxing ring in recent times, it was stated that N. Santosh picked up a bronze in the bantam weight in the last Nationals while N. Usha won a silver medal in the World Cup. In the Commonwealth Youth Games held in Pune, N. Santosh was the gold medallist in light-welterweight and V. Durga Rao bagged a bronze medal.

Andhra women finished a creditable second in the last Senior Nationals for women under the stewardship of coach I. Venkateshwara Rao.