Chairman of the Oyo State Boxing Association, Mr. Lateef Opaleye Akintunde, has commended the decision of GOtv, sponsors of the GOtv Boxing NextGen Search, to stage the third edition in Ibadan.
Speaking in Ibadan yesterday, Akintunde said GOtv Boxing NextGen Search 3, a talent hunt for young boxers seeking to turn professional, is a platform for boxers in Oyo State and others from across the country quick access into the professional cadre.
He explained that the lack of opportunity has hampered the development of many talented boxers in the country.
â€œYoung and talented boxers around here and Iâ€™m sure in other parts of the country have had their development stymied by the lack of easy access into the professional ranks. With the GOtv Boxing NextGen Search coming to Ibadan, a big chance awaits boxers to find their way into the paid category.
â€œWe have many talented boxers in Oyo State and they have been itching for an opportunity such as this. It is why GOtv and Flykite Promotions, the sponsors and organisers respectively, deserve enormous praise for the decision to stage the talent hunt in Ibadan,â€ he said.
Akintunde called on young boxers to pick up registration forms for the talent hunt at the Lekan Salami Stadium and Walan Hotel, Ring Road Ibadan and the Nigerian Boxing Board of Control Secretariat, National Stadium, Lagos. Intending participants can also register through phone calls to designated numbers.
GOtv Boxing NextGen Search, which debuted in February 2016, will hold betweenÂ 16 and 18 NovemberÂ at Walan Hotel (formerly Dâ€™Rovans Hotel), Ibadan. Participating boxers will take part in sparring sessions under the watchful eyes of top-tier boxing coaches such as Joe Mensah and Obisia Nwakpa, who will select the best among them.
The first two editions of the programme held in Lagos, attracting over 200 boxers. Many of those selected have fought professionally at various editions of GOtv Boxing Night. Rilwan â€œBaby Faceâ€ Babatunde, a graduate of GOtv Boxing NextGen 1, won the best boxer award at GOtv Boxing Night 11 and a cash prize of N2million.
Others who have fought professionally include Matthew Obinna, Oamudiamen Goodluck and Chukwuebuka Ezewudo.
Accommodation will be provided free of charge for boxers outside Ibadan and environs, who get selected by the coaches.