Asiad: Women's boxing added to Asian Games programme

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The Independent Online

Women's boxing will make its debut at the Asian Games later this year ahead of its inclusion as an Olympic sport at London in 2012, officials said Wednesday.

Li Xiaofeng, a senior official at the Guangzhou Asian Games Organising Committee, said in a statement that the decision was made in conjunction with the Olympic Council of Asia.

International Olympic Committee president Jacques Rogge is a strong advocate of women's boxing and he pushed through the decision to make it an Olympic sport last year.

Women's boxing, which first came to prominence in England in 1720, appeared as a demonstration sport at the 1904 Olympics but did not reappear on the radar until a vain attempt to have it introduced into the Games failed in 2005.

The Asian Games, and the Olympics, will have three categories - flyweight, lightweight and middleweight.

The Asian Games, the second-largest sports event in the world after the Summer Olympics, will be held in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou from November 12-27.

More than 14,000 athletes, trainers and coaches from 45 countries and regions will compete in 42 sports.