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Slimline favourites to win National Boxing C’ships

By Shamil Amit

The delayed Boxing National Championship tournament for 2011, organized by the Amateur Boxing Association of Sri Lanka (ABASL), will now be held from January 11 to 14 at the Sugathadasa Indoor Stadium, Kotahena commencing at 4:00 PM on each day.

In the past it had been held in late September or early October. The men’s bouts will start on the January 11 and women’s boxing will begin on January 12. In order to cater to the large number of entries anticipated, boxing will be held on 2 rings simultaneously.

The ABA of Ceylon was formed in 1926 and they conducted the inaugural National Championship that year. Prior to that another boxing championship had been held for the benefit of the three Armed Forces, since the beginning of 20th century and had been organized by the United Services Boxing Association of Ceylon (USBAC).

According to earlier conditions a boxer need not have to represent a club, an Armed Service or a Govt. Department. He could enter unattached. He could also box in more than one weight category. One could box with his beard. None of these conditions are prevalent now. A boxer has to be clean shaved, not having even a moustache.

According to records available since 1954, the Army had dominated the Nationals. They had won the Championship outright on 31 occasions and also shared once with Pee Vee Club of Slave Island. Police had won it six times and Slimline Club at Pannala had won five times. Slimline are the reigning champions. Colombo YMCA had won outright 4 times and had shared with the Navy once. Navy had won 3 times outright and shared once. Both St. Michael’s Club Polwatte and Taj Boxing Club each had won once. In 1961, Pakistan Boxing Federation became champions at our Nationals.

There are four awards made at this meet. They are :- a) Sgt. E.S. Selvadurai Memorial Challenge Cup (Lotus flower shaped) awarded to the Most Successful Club at Nationals - Since 1954 (records from 1926 to 1953 are not available) b) Sir Henry William Manning Challenge Cup Awarded to the Most Scientific boxer of the meet – since 1926 (This cup also had been awarded at the Inter Services Championship from 1923 to 1925) c) Muttiah Xavier Roche Memorial Challenge Cup – Awarded to the Most Successful club of the year (Since 1954), Donald Munesinghe Challenge Cup – awarded to the best loser of the Meet since 1992.

From the past the standard of the Inter School Championship for the Sir R. Edward Stubbs Shield had been so high that certain winners in senior weight category boxes were bold enough to enter and win at the Nationals. Some such champions were M.T. Swangsa, Albert Perera T.M.S. Samidon, M.S.M. Ickram of Zahira College Maradana, Dharmasiri Weerakoon of Christian College Kotte, Malcolm Bulner of St. Sylvester’s College Kandy, Winston and Geoffery Vanculenberg brothers, M Jaroof, H.M. Marzook and T.J.I Ismail of St. Michael’s College Polwatte, D.S. and D.J. Nittikuumar twins and W.M. Chitrananda of St. Mathews College Dematagoda, N.B. Walisundera, R.M.U. Bandara, Manju Wanniarachchi of Vidyartha College Kandy, Anuruddha Rathnayaka of Peradeniya Central College and K.A.C.N. Alexander of Seevali Central College of Ratnapura.

Slimline Club Pannala is the strongest contender this time. They missed the Clifford Cup at the tournament held in December at Pallekele because some of their top boxers had gone to Pakistan for the Ali Bhutto Cup meet. Army which won the Clifford Cup Championship will be the strongest rival to Slimline. Navy and Police clubs will also field strong teams.

Posted on 2012-01-10 14:39:24
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Nov 23
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