LAUSANNE, Switzerland, June 20, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — In his final report of the independent boxing investigation, Professor Richard McLaren, O.C., details a history of financial mismanagement and deception, rule breaking on the field of play, and inadequate training and education programs in the sport of boxing.
“The International Boxing Association is an organization in transition but still in need of reform. International boxing cannot seem to shake its historical culture of bout manipulation and of operating outside the rules and beyond,” said Professor McLaren. “If the sport is to retain its place in the Olympic family, it needs to act now.”
The report describes the decisions that led to near-financial collapse of the International Boxing Association (AIBA) in 2017, which began with a big dream to revolutionize amateur boxing by bringing professional boxing into the AIBA fold through the creation of new ventures.
“The singular focus of management to make new external ventures work required time, energy, and money. All to the detriment of the organization and the sport,” said Professor McLaren.
In addition, the report identifies multiple instances of officials not complying with the rules of conduct in the field of play during recent tournaments. These included peer pressure to manipulate bouts, excessive manual manipulation of the Referee and Judges draw, unauthorized individuals on the field of play, and the use of mobile phones.
“These kinds of infractions reinforce the past culture which disregarded the ethics and integrity of the sport and open the door to bout manipulation,” said Professor McLaren.
In the first stage of the investigation announced in September 2021, Professor McLaren confirmed that a bout manipulation system by officials existed at the Rio Summer Olympic. The first report also looked at the internal power dynamics within AIBA which allowed the corruption to evolve. In December 2021, Professor McLaren reported on the period following the Rio Games. He found that although there was an attempt to clean house following Rio, the revolving door of leaders created a vacuum that was filled by factions vying for power and control.
“Taken as a whole, the three phases of work provide IBA with one of the most comprehensive studies of any sport. We bring together the historical, social, financial, and structural factors that have contributed to boxing’s reputation of corruption and mismanagement,” said Professor McLaren.
The final report also outlines a series of recommendations that includes the commissioning of a cultural review; the establishment of a Training Academy; the development of comprehensive written training materials; the removal of the accreditation process from local organizing committees, as well as, a series of recommendations for the rigorous enforcement of the rules in the field of play.
The full report can be downloaded here: https://www.mclarenglobalsportsolutions.com/Boxing-Investigation-Final.php
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