It has been a rough year for boxing. With shows limited, title fights have almost become treats with 10-12 round contests not as regular as they once were due to the global pandemic and its impact on boxing and businesses as a whole.
Despite the ongoing Covid-19 situation, IBO President Ed Levine has worked hard to keep options open for fighters, managers and promoters alike, helping them gain opportunities in a period of downturn.
The Florida-based fight figure discussed some of his highlights of a difficult year from an IBO perspective.
“Despite the global situation, we have worked hard to provide opportunities for top quality contests to have the IBO titles attached to them,” said Levine. “We have had Erislandy Lara vs Greg Vendetti and Robin Krasniqi vs Dominic Boesel as well as Terri Harper vs Natasha Jonas and Cecilia Braekhus vs Jessica McCaskill. These are top quality fights involving world class operators and we were delighted to be a part of these contests.
“We have also had many title fights for our regional titles during this period. Unfortunately, during this time frame there have been many world title fights scheduled, which were subsequently postponed due to the crisis. Needless to say, the IBO is excited at the prospect of Anthony Joshua vs Kubrat Pulev that will take place on December 12 in the UK and, of course, Gennady Golovkin who will also defend his world title on December 18 in the USA.
“Right behind that the IBO should have six world title fights that are tentatively scheduled, so we are staying busy and always looking to create the right opportunities for fighters.”
In a time of economic flux, many businesses have found ways to restructure and grow during the stresses of the Covid-19 Pandemic. This has been something the IBO has continued to do; as the sport of boxing evolves, the sanctioning bodies have a duty to evolve with it.
“We have used this unfortunate period of time to enhance and update the IBO website and to bring the IBO Top 100 to the attention of more and more boxing fans,” said Levine. “We have continued to support our fighters and push our champions as much as we can in multiple, unique ways.
“We remain committed to continue our efforts to bring transparency, trust, and integrity to the sport of boxing. When we get past this pandemic, we will return stronger than ever. Right now, patience and fortitude would be our motto.”