The postponed New Zealand Boxing Championships are set to take place this month.
Boxing New Zealand responded to the challenges presented by the COVID-19 disruption to the 2020 competition calendar, by pushing the season out by several months.
The rescheduled BNZ calendar saw the North and South Island Golden Gloves shifted from the traditional June date to October 2020, with the 2020 BNZ National Championships moved to January 2021.
The move will benefit several Kiwi boxers who are still eyeing berths in the last chance Olympic qualifying tournament.
The 2020 BNZ National Championships are to be hosted by the Wellington/Hutt Valley Boxing Association, at the Te Rauparaha Arena in Porirua City, January 20-23.
The 2020 BNZ Nationals will enter new territory with the live streaming of the senior championship title deciders for the first time.
Boxing New Zealand President Steve Hartley says the live streaming of the Nationals came about after a very successful trial live streaming at the 2020 North Island Golden Gloves.
“The live streaming option was offered by Rob Waddell and his company ‘The Sports Collective’. Rob has started a company designed to showcase school-age sports and give the younger members of our sporting community exposure, which can be accessed by family and the greater community.
“This has provided a tremendous opportunity for our members to show the New Zealand public their talents and performances.
"The viewer ratings from the Golden Gloves exceeded Sky Sports predictions by 350 per cent with 40,000 views."
The Boxing New Zealand National Championships can be viewed on Sky Sport and Sky Sport extra live streaming.
The out of season National Championships have drawn strong support with 116 entries spread through the Cadets, Junior, Youth and Elite divisions.
The Elite male entries top the list with 40 competitors, chasing the eight titles on the line.
“The 2020 postponed championships have attracted very good entries and the competition will be as good as in the past championships," says Boxing New Zealand Chairman Keith Walker.
“This year we will see the last of some of our top boxers, with their announcement, of turning professional after the championships.
“David Nyika who has already qualified for Tokyo, is to have his pro debut soon after the nationals, and Jerome Pampellone who is still hoping to qualify (for the Olympics) is turning professional as well.
“David Nyika has no boxers in his Heavyweight category at present, but that could change at championship time.
"Jerome has two opponents in the Light Heavyweight category at present. Other boxers, who have attended Olympic Qualifying events, include Troy Garton, Tasmyn Benny, Ariane Nicholson, Uila Mau'u and Ryan Scaife, who will be competing at the championships.
“Our Nationals are the showpiece of Boxing New Zealand, with not only the very experienced boxers on show but also the opportunity for emerging talent to parade their talents, as they look to stamp their mark on future international events including the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Manchester”.
Defending 2019 senior title holders in Dominic Roe (welterweight) Ryan Scaife (Middleweight) Jerome Pampellone (Light Heavyweight) and Ulia Mau'u (Super Heavyweight), will provide stiff competition for the other contenders in their weight divisions.
Three 2019 female champions will line-up at the Te Rauparaha Arena.
Current 57kg champion Troy Garton has moved up a division to the 60kg ranks, where she is likely to tangle with defending title holder Michele Nuku. Ariana Nicholson will be seeking back to back national titles in the 69 kilo class.
Boxing New Zealand 2020 National Championships 20-23 January 2021
@ Te Rauparaha Arena, Porirua
20 January Preliminary bouts
21 January Preliminary bouts
22 January Senior Semi-Finals
23 January Senior Finals Night