ISLAMABAD: The 2nd Benazir Bhutto International Boxing Championship, to be staged in Islamabad from Dec 20, is likely to host a number of legendary figures including former world heavyweight champion Mike Tyson, 45, and current boxing sensation Amir Khan who will inaugurate the high-profile tournament.
In a press conference organised by the Pakistan Boxing Federation on Monday, the PBF president Doda Khan Bhutto told the media about the lavish plans in the offing for the event.
‘Famous boxer Amir Khan has already confirmed his participation in the event on our request while former boxing great Mike Tyson has asked us to provide the dates for the event. The former world champion is quite likely to attend the 10-day event,` he said.
Doda further disclosed that 23 countries have already confirmed their participation while the total number of participating countries will be 25. Pakistan Army along with Islamabad Police will be asked to provide top level security to the teams in the major boxing extravaganza, he said, `Discussions are underway with the Army and Islamabad Police for provision of foolproof security in the event.
None of the foreign teams have visited Pakistan since that ghastly terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore during March 2008, expressing security fears about playing in the region.
Doda, however, maintained that they have successfully managed to convince the international teams to compete in the Benazir Bhutto International Boxing Championship which will do a lot of good to Pakistan`s image and will boost the economic activity as well.
Elaborating on Pakistan Boxing Federation`s plans for the event, Doda said: `We will introduce three teams in different categories during the event which will cost the federation around Rs60 million.
He said that they would try to generate money through sponsors which would ensure that financial constraints do not hamper successful staging of the event. However, he said there has been no offer of assistance from the Pakistan Cricket Board yet.
According to the Secretary Pakistan Boxing Federation, Muhammad Akram Media Accreditation would start from DEcember 10, 2011.
According to one federation official, the opening ceremony would be a paid event while there will be free entry for boxing fans during the ten days of the championship. The event will be held at the Liaquat Gymnasium. —- Courtesy: Daily Dawn, Karachi.