The WBC issue a statement on their stance on pro fighters being allowed to qualify for the Olympic Games:
The WBC has expressed its opinion with total opposition towards AIBA’s decision to allow professional boxers to fight amateur boxers during the Olympic games in Rio 2016. The WBC has voiced the opinion of the majority in the boxing community from all over the world. There are too many unanswered questions, the competition format and standards are not clear and the risks towards the fighters safety are tremendous.
Boxing is one of the founding sports of the Ancient Olympic games in Greece and modern boxing has been known to be divided into amateur boxing and professional boxing. AIBA is acting with an evident conflict of interest by threatening this structure by being a promoter, manager, regulator and governing entity who wants to have amateur boxers fight professional boxers in a scenario where severe mismatches could result in tragedies.
To have an amateur boxer vs a professional boxer is like having a marathon runner vs a sprint 100-meter runner, both are runners but they compete in different sports and disciplines.
Basketball, tennis, soccer and other sports have “pros vs amateurs” in the Olympics , the difference is that in boxing, there are no goals, baskets or points, “you don’t play boxing”. Boxing is a combat sport and if the level of opposition is not properly matched it can be very dangerous. Professional boxing is structured by levels of competition , four-round fighters , six-round, eight-round, 10-round and eventually championship fights for 12 rounds. One can only hope that AIBA will filter which professionals will participate in Rio.
The WBC has taken a stance and decided that any WBC champion and top 15 rated in our rankings is forbidden to participate until clear guidelines and safety measures are in place. If they do they will be banned from the WBC for two years.