Plans for Indian Premier League-style boxing championship underway

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New Delhi, Feb 19(ANI): The Indian Boxing Federation (IBF) is looking to push the sport to new heights and rival the gentleman's game in a nation of cricket-mad enthusiasts.

Speaking at a press conference in the national capital on Friday, the IBF's Chairman, Abhay Singh Chautala, said plans for the Indian Series of Boxing, a competition similar to the lucrative cash-rich Indian Premier League, were in the pipeline.

"We'll be starting the Indian Series Boxing, that'll start immediately after the World Series Boxing. You'll have the IPL type with city franchises, minimum will be four, maximum will be six city franchises. We'll have foreign boxers also participating with them and we are working on that and the first bouts will start March 2011," Chautala said.

The series is expected to play an integral part in bringing bilateral, tri-nation and other international boxing events to India.

The golden boy of Indian boxing, Olympic and World Championship bronze medallist, Vijender Singh, believes the series will bring new fans to the sport.

"They say 'what is seen, sells'. People don't know what boxing is. They don't know how you get points and how the sport is played. All they see people fighting. But once people learn about the sport and it reaches the grassroots level, people will understand," Singh said.

The press conference took place ahead of the fifth Commonwealth Boxing Championships, which will be hosted in New Delhi from March 10 to March 18.

The championship will bring together 140 boxers from 17 countries and they will be seen in action in around 130 bouts.

Along with Vijender Singh, boxers Akhil Kumar, Dinesh Kumar, Nanao Singh and Suranjay Singh will be contending for India in this ensuing sparring event. (ANI)

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