MAJOR weight class change announced today for 2020 Tokyo Olympics

The Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee have today confirmed major changes to the line-up of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, with boxing one of the sports effected.

Five new sports – wrestling, baseball, karate, sport climbing, surfing, and skateboarding – had already been added, bringing the total number to 33.

Today the 28 initial sports saw a total of 15 additional events added, mainly with the focus of promoting a fairer proportion of women’s events.

IOC president Thomas Bach said the Games will be “more youthful, more urban and include more women.”

Boxing has seen no new events (read: weight classes) added – however, TWO weights have been transferred from the men’s classes to the women.

At Rio there were 10 weights for men and three for women. By comparison, Tokyo will now see FIVE classes for women with Featherweight (57kg) and Welterweight (69kg) being added to the roster, joining the existing weights of Middle (75kg), Light (60kg), and Fly (51kg).

The weights ‘transferred’ from the men’s classes have not yet been confirmed – leading to speculation that we could be in store for a comprehensive recalibration of the categories to ensure a safe and representative spread of the eight weight classes.

Men’s boxing had eight classes for the Games between 1920 and 1948 before increasing to 10, then 11, and finally 12, before moving back down since the turn of the millennium.

In total, there will be 44 fewer male boxers at the Tokyo Games (bringing the total down to 206), and 44 more female boxers (bringing the total up to 80).

LISTEN: Gavan Casey and Joe O’Neill speak to Luke Keeler and Paddy Barnes on Episode 6 of The Irish Boxing Show:

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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie