Men boxing

Sport Preview: Boxing

Trina Edwards Boxing Finals Day 12 1754 | June 23, 2024
Boxing will see men and women contest a number of weight categories. Photos: Trina Edwards, Samoa 2019 Pacific Games News Service

The stage is set for one of the most anticipated and entertaining events of the Sol2023 Pacific Games, boxing, which starts on Monday 27 November at Honiara’s Friendship Hall.

As the countdown to the boxing competition intensifies, let’s take a nostalgic journey through the annals of boxing history in the Pacific. The boxing weight classes contested at each Pacific Games have not only witnessed the evolution of the sport but have also been a stage for unparalleled displays of athleticism and national pride.

This year’s event promises to be a masterclass with both raw and experienced boxing talents gearing up to compete in a total of 23 weight classes across both men’s and women’s categories.

Men’s boxing at the Pacific Games

The journey began in 1963 in Suva, where the inaugural Pacific Games set the tone for decades of pugilistic excellence. From the Light-Fly to the Super-Heavyweight classes, nations like Papua New Guinea (PNG), Fiji, and Samoa etched their names into the boxing archives. Fast forward to the 1983 Games in Apia, where Solomon Islands and Tonga secured their places in history, proudly represented by gold medallists marked with their respective flags.

The weight divisions saw intermittent changes, with notable moments in Noumea in 1966 and Port Moresby in 1979. The Apia Games in 1983, with an expanded list of weight classes, added new chapters to the Pacific boxing narrative.

As the years rolled on, cities like Papeete, Tumon, and Suva hosted unforgettable showdowns, introducing weight classes and witnessing the rise of formidable boxers. The dynamics of the competition shifted, but the essence of the Pacific Games boxing remained: a celebration of skill, determination, and national identity.

The weight classes for men include:

  1. Flyweight 49-51 kg Male
  2. Light Flyweight 46-48 kg Male
  3. Bantam Weight 52-54 kg Male
  4. Featherweight 55-57 kg Male
  5. Lightweight 58-60 kg Male
  6. Light Welterweight 61-63.5 kg Male
  7. Welterweight 64-67 kg Male
  8. Light Middleweight 68-71 kg Male
  9. Middleweight 72-75 kg Male
  10. Light Heavyweight 76-80 kg Male
  11. Cruiserweight 81-86 kg Male
  12. Heavyweight 87-92 kg Male
  13. Super Heavyweight Over 92 kg Male

Women’s boxing at the Pacific Games

The inclusion of women’s boxing added another layer of excitement to the Pacific Games at Port Moresby 2015. Female boxers from PNG, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), and other nations showcased their prowess. The number of women’s boxing events increased at Samoa 2019. At Sol2023, weight classes for women include:

  1. Flyweight 51-52kg
  2. Light Flyweight 49-50kg
  3. Bantam Weight 53-54
  4. Feature weight 55-57
  5. Lightweight 58-60kg
  6. Light Welterweight 61-63kg
  7. Welterweight 64-66kg
  8. Light Middleweight 71-75kg
  9. Light Heavyweight 76-81kg
  10. Heavyweight 81kg

As we eagerly anticipate the forthcoming Pacific Games, the history outlined in these weight classes sets the stage for a new chapter in Pacific boxing. The Sol2023 competition promises to bring fresh narratives, unexpected triumphs, and perhaps the emergence of new boxing legends.

As the boxing community prepares for the intense battles in Friendship Hall, let’s celebrate the rich history and diversity that Pacific Games boxing has offered over the years – a history that continues to be written with every jab, hook, and victorious moment in the ring.

Boxing runs until Saturday 2 December at Friendship Hall. Tickets are available at Sol2023 ticket booths for $30.

By Francis Pituvaka, Pacific Games News Service

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