This summer will finally see the Tokyo Olympics take place after being canceled last year after you know what!
Thankfully the pinnacle of amateur sport is back and I wanted to highlight 11 talented boxers you should look out for in this Summer’s Olympics.
The boxers on the list are a mix of previous and upcoming amateurs that have really made a name for themselves. You can watch my video below or scroll down to see the full list.
1. Frazer Clarke – Team GB
Frazer Clarke is one of the most successful British Amateurs competing in the Super Heavyweight division. Having won 6 Gold amateur titles across national, European and international tournaments.
In 2016 he did not make the GB squad as he was overlooked by fellow super heavyweight Joe Joyce, who would go on to win silver.
Having trained with many of the top heavyweights, such as Anthony Joshua, Clarke will want to prove a point in Tokyo and go one step further than the likes of Joyce.
2. Keyshawn Davis – Team USA
Davis is currently a very highly rated up and coming professional boxer, who will be competing in this year’s games. You may have noticed him fighting the recent Canelo vs Saunders undercard.
Having already won two silver medals in the World Championships and Pan American Games in 2019. Davis will be hoping to go one step further in Tokyo by bringing back gold before concentrating on his professional career.
He will be competing in the lightweight division and is definitely exciting one to watch.
3. Paulo Aokuso – Team Australia
Aokuso, is one Australia’s best up and coming amateur boxers who will be competing in the light heavyweight division in Tokyo. He started boxing only at 18 and now finds himself being one of the favorites to take gold in the light heavyweight division.
The Aussie managed to beat the number 2 ranked fighter in the world to book his place last year. Thus showing his incredible progression in such a short period.
He trains under Lomalito Moala, who was a Tongan boxing’s Commonwealth bronze medallist at the 2010 Games. If you aren’t following him on Instagram give him a follow here as he gives out some brilliant training content of Aokuso in action.
4. Andy Cruz – Team Cuba
As we all know, the Cubans produce some of the most talented boxers in the world. Andy Cruz certainly lives up to that stereotype as he approaches his first Olympics.
Cruz at just 25 years old has already won two golds at World Championships and two golds at the Pan American Games cementing his amateur status.
He is now fighting in the light welterweight category and will be one of the favourites to win that weight division in Tokyo.
5. Shakhobidin Zoirov – Team Uzbekistan
The Uzberkistani boxer is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to amateur boxing! Fighting in the flyweight division, Zoirov has already won gold at the 2016 Olympics in Rio and Gold in the world championships in 2019.
In 2019, Zoirov made his professional debut, scoring KO victory in the first minute of the opening round, which I’m sure he will continue. Nevertheless, he is still very much invested in becoming Uzbekistan’s first two-time Olympic Champion, before concentrating on his pro career.
6. Julio César La Cruz – Team Cuba
Julio Cesar La Cruz, is one Cuba highest decorated Amateur boxers competing at the Tokyo Olympics. With a very impressive record of 206-26, he is one of the most experienced fighters competing!
Having already been AIBA Men’s World Boxing Champion four times. He has also won gold at three Pan American Games and won gold in the last Olympics in Rio. It’s really hard to see how anyone can stop him again in Tokyo.
I’m intrigued to see if Cesar La Cruz faces Paulo Aokuso who I mentioned earlier in the list which could be a decider for gold!
7. Muslim Gadzhimagomedov – Team Russia
Gadzhimagomedov is one of the favourites to win the Heavyweight division, having already won gold at the AIBA world championship and European Games.
The Russian is very technical and has some good footwork, reminding me very much of Wladamir Klitschko in his boxing style.
I can see him going far in this competition!
8. Pat McCormack
Pat McCormack has to be another favourite to bring back a medal for Team GB this summer with his impressive resume to date.
So far to date he has won silver in the World and European championships, along with Gold at the commonwealth games.
He will be competing in the welterweight division and very much will looking to add another gold with his brilliant skill set.
9. Bakhodir Jalolov – Team Uzbekistan
Jalolov will return with vengeance to try and win a medal this time after failing to do so at 2016 Rio Olympics.
The Uzerberkstani, won gold at the last world championships and having turned professional after the last Olympics, he does have professional experience now going into Tokyo.
From watching some of his fights on DAZN the guy is a beast! Standing at 6 ft 7 and being a southpaw makes him a very tricky customer for anyone.
10. Oleksandr Khyzhniak – Team Ukraine
Being from the Ukraine, Khyzhniak has been touted as the “new Vasyl Lomachenko.” Espcially when you look at his impressive amateur record 107-13 by the age of 25.
In this time he has also won gold medals at the 2017 World Championships, 2017 European Championships and the 2019 European Games.
Competing in the middleweight division, I expect the Ukrainian to put down his mark in this Olympics with his impressive skills and pressure fighting.
11. Eumir Marcial – Team Philippines
The Filipino Eumir Marcial, is in fact already professional having already competed in his first pro fight under the PBC banner in December.
Competing in the middleweight division, his southpaw stance is a hassle for many of his opponents much like his fellow inspiration Manny Pacquiao!
In terms of his Amateur career he has won three golds at the south east asian games and Silver in at 2019 AIBA World Championships. He will no doubt be one of the favourites to get to the final.
Final thoughts and format at Olympics
The boxing competition at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in 2021 will have two fewer men’s weight divisions and two additional women’s divisions compared to Rio 2016. It will take place between 24th – 8th August.
Just like the last Olympics, professionals are now allowed to compete, but are yet to win a medal as none got past the last 16. However, with some previous winners that have turned professional and are returning, I could see this changing this time.
Hopefully this gives you some insight on what up and coming stars to look out for in Tokyo!
You can see the full boxing schedule here – Japan Standard Time.
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