Wladimir Klitschko has been a long time friend, supporter, and champion of the World Boxing Association. Klitschko, who had the second longest reign in heavyweight boxing history behind only Joe Louis, is pleading with authorities to replace AIBA with the WBA to ensure organization for Olympic boxing.
“For the first time in the sport of boxing the worst has happened” said Klitschko, “In an unprecedented shift that would rock athletics and the Olympics, boxing is in danger of being halted due to current disfunction, leading to losing the Olympic licensing.”
The heavyweight legend further added “We need a combined effort to protect life changing dreams of the athletes who want to participate in the upcoming Olympic Games in Tokyo and forward. Let’s not understate the excitement this also brings fans who continue to watch boxing, and appreciate this classic tactical sport for all past Olympics and any future Olympic Games.”
Klitschko really wants true change and improvement instead of further allowing the sport to slide downhill as it has under recent times with poor leadership. He made a public statement on social media, urging change to occur before the sport takes another blow.
“I’m pleading with the National Federations to continue signing with the pioneers of boxing, the world renowned, WBA. I’m also asking the IOC to consider the WBA as the organization that will centralize the sport while continuing to improve the protections and interests of its athletes, fans, and grant the Olympic license to the WBA to represent the sport for the upcoming games in to Tokyo!”
Klitschko had a very decorated amateur pedigree in addition to his professional one, winning a gold medal at the Olympic Games in Atlanta before debuting as a professional later that very same year. This is why he is devoutly tied to both amateur and professional boxing and takes a special interest in Olympic boxing.
“Early on I knew if I could qualify and I would say even compete at the Olympics it would be a life changing event for me, my family, my country and my sport and possibly the globe.” Said the Ukrainian native, further adding “The year was 1996 when I went to Atlanta and won Olympic gold, the same medal that later was auctioned in a charity for $ 1 million. I’m honored that the same medal is being held in the museum today and has been for two decades, I hope, a motivation for young visitors to become Champions in sports or more importantly in life.”
Klitschko has a huge platform internationally and will continue to work with WBA President Gilberto Jesus Mendoza to ensure the advancement of the sport and to lift it higher, to its previous heights in sporting history, which is part of Mendoza’s pledge for “The Return of Boxing” that has been previously reported on as the direction the President and team of the WBA is working towards continuously.