The competition was originally due to take place in Wuhan but was moved to Jordan after the coronavirus outbreak originated in the Chinese city. It means the hosts have had partial time to make but a number of guarantors were signed-up for the event, which begins tomorrow at Prince Hamzah Hall.
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Thirty-five countries and 221 boxers are expected to be represented at the event, with 41 men’s and 22 women’s berths up for grabs at the Olympic 2020 Games. Men will be competing across eight weight classes with the women doing battle over five in the Summer Games.
Uzbekistan will be among the countries to watch after they finished top of the medals table at both the 2019 Men’s World Championships in Yekaterinburg and the Rio 2016 Olympic. Shakhobidin Zoirov, the reigning Tokyo Olympic and world champion at flyweight, is among their squad.
Kazakhstan, who won five medals in Rio and six at the Men’s World Championships, have named ruling light-heavyweight world champion Bekzad Nurdauletov in their line-up. In the women’s event, India’s six-time world champion Mary Kom, the London 2012 Olympic bronze medalist, will be a big draw at flyweight.
The Philippines have selected world featherweight champion Nesthy Petecio who struck gold in Ulan-Ude in Russia last year, while Chinese Taipei has named bantamweight world gold medalist Huang Hsiao-wen. The first day of action tomorrow will feature beginnings in the men’s 63 kilograms, 75kg and 81kg and the women’s 75kg. The competition will run through until March 11.
Hosts Jordan will look to the likes of Rio 2016 Olympians Obada Al-Kasbeh and Hussein Iashaish, at light-welterweight and heavyweight correspondingly. Zeyad Eshaish touched the quarter-finals of the welterweight separation in Yekaterinburg and could also be a contender on home soil.