Promoter of the latest grassroots boxing development programme tagged, NEXT RATED YOUNG STARS Championship, Jeffrey Armah Mensah, has revealed that 24 fighters have registered for the event slated to hold later this year in Lagos.
According to Mensah, son of Nigeria’s veteran boxing coach and 1972 Munich Olympics star, Joe Mensah, the grassroots boxing tournament will future young men and women boxers from amateur clubs from different parts of Lagos.
He revealed that Kelly Oyebola, brother of late former Nigeria and British heavyweight boxer, James Oyebola, is also part of the planners of the championship.
Mensah said the tournament, which date has not been fixed due to ongoing consultations with stakeholders, would be held quarterly.
He added that the tournament would also be used to seek and reward great young talents in Lagos through the provision of the platform to showcase their skills and push them forward to represent Nigeria at major tournaments like the World Championships and the Olympics.
“The objectives of Next Rated Young Stars is to bring back the glory days of good amateur boxing tournaments for young boxers (men and women), to search and reward hidden new talents, giving them the confidence to dream and believe in themselves.
“To motivate and educate youths that through sports, they can learn values of honesty, integrity and sportsmanship that will last them a lifetime… this tournament tends to draw local and international attention to grassroots boxing in Lagos,” he said.
He added, “To be one of Next Rated Young Stars, boxers will be selected by Lagos State Boxing Association (LABA) from different boxing clubs in Lagos. The boxers will slug it out in 10 different weight categories, from the featherweight category to the heavyweight category for both men and women.
“There will be three rounds with each round lasting three minutes… also the tournament will feature two exhibitions fights. At the end of the tournament, cash prizes and medals will be given to the first, second, and third-placed boxers.”