British Lionhearts reveal line-up for 2016 season of World Series of Boxing

By 13th January 2016News

Boxers from Great Britain aim to increase opportunities to qualify for Rio via WSB

Competing in WSB is one of the qualification routes for Rio so this is a very important part of the GB Boxing squad’s programme for 2016.

The British Lionhearts has announced the boxers who will compete for Great Britain in Season VI of the World Series of Boxing (WSB) which begins next week.

The squad is made-up of 30 boxers from GB Boxing’s Podium and Podium Potential squads and eight overseas selections (in accordance with the regulations of WSB).

The contingent from GB Boxing includes all six of the medallists from last year’s European Championships in Bulgaria when Great Britain delivered its best ever performance at that tournament returning with a gold for Joe Cordina, silver medals for Harvey Horn, Muhammad Ali, Qais Ashfaq and Pat McCormack and a bronze for Joshua Buatsi.

They are joined by the experienced pair of Joe Joyce and Antony Fowler, who both have Commonwealth Games golds and World Championship bronze medals to their name.

2016 will be Joyce’s fourth season in WSB where he has consistently been one of the best performers in the competition.  He has a track record of 12 wins from 14 bouts and was the number two ranked super-heavyweight in season 2015.

WSB provides a qualification route to Rio 2016 whereby a boxer that competes once in seasons 2015 and 2016 or twice in season 2016 will be eligible for selection by GB Boxing to compete at the WSB Olympic qualifying event in Sofia in May of this year.

Rob McCracken, GB Boxing’s Performance Director and Head Coach of the British Lionhearts, said: “Competing in WSB is one of the qualification routes for Rio so this is a very important part of the GB Boxing squad’s programme for 2016.

“The format is slightly different to traditional Olympic-style boxing, however this is our third season in WSB, so we have more experience of the tournament which will provide valuable competition opportunities for the boxers as we move into the business end of the Olympic cycle.”

The new season of WSB begins on Thursday 21 January 2016 when the Lionhearts take on the USA Knockouts in Miami.  The team follows this with a trip to Morocco to face the Atlas Lions on Friday 5 February 2016.

The first home match is against the Mexico Guerreros on Thursday 18 February 2016 at York Hall.  The contest will feature bouts at light-fly, bantam, light-welter, middle and heavyweight and is likely to feature Antony Fowler, Qais Ashfaq and Pat McCormack.

Tickets go on sale at 10.00am on Thursday 21 January 2016 at http://tickets.sky.com/Boxing/World-Series-of-Boxing.

The remaining home fixtures will be see the Lionhearts take-on the USA Knockouts on 3 March and the Morocco Atlas Lions on 17 March 2016.  A season ticket is available for all three home matches priced £30.

The full British Lionhearts squad is (P – denotes a member of GB Boxing’s Podium squad):

Name

Weight category

Nationality

Sunny Edwards

Light-flyweight (49kg)

England

Joe Maphosa

Light-flyweight (49kg)

England

Harvey Horn

Light-flyweight (49kg)

England (P)

Galal Yafai

Light-flyweight (49kg)

England

Muhammad Ali

Flyweight (52kg)

England (P)

Jack Bateson

Flyweight (52kg)

England (P)

Blane Hyland

Flyweight (52kg)

England

Koryun Soghomonyan

Flyweight (52kg)

Armenia

Qais Ashfaq

Bantamweight (56kg)

England (P)

Sean McGoldrick

Bantamweight (56kg)

Wales (P)

Peter McGrail

Bantamweight (56kg)

England (P)

Chris Bourke

Bantamweight (56kg)

England

Joe Cordina

Lightweight (60kg)

Wales (P)

Luke McCormack

Lightweight (60kg)

England (P)

Calum French

Lightweight (60kg)

England

Oualid Belaoura

Lightweight (60kg)

France

Sam Maxwell

Light-welterweight (64kg)

England (P)

Pat McCormack

Light-welterweight (64kg)

England (P)

Alfie Price

Light-welterweight (64kg)

England

Josh Kelly

Welterweight (69kg)

England (P)

Ekow Essuman

Welterweight (69kg)

England (P)

Conor Loftus

Welterweight (69kg)

England

Cyrus Pattinson

Welterweight (69kg)

England

Antony Fowler

Middleweight (75kg)

England (P)

Troy Williamson

Middleweight (75kg)

England (P)

Damian Bolequia

Middleweight (75kg)

Spain

Zoltan Harcsa

Middleweight (75kg)

Hungary

Joshua Buatsi

Light-heavyweight (81kg)

England (P)

Lyndon Arthur

Light-heavyweight (81kg)

England

Tom Whittaker-Hart

Light-heavyweight (81kg)

England

Radoslav Pantaleev

Light-heavyweight (81kg)

Bulgaria

Lawrence Okolie

Heavyweight (91kg)

England

Kody Davis

Heavyweight (91kg)

Wales

Aboulaye Diane

Heavyweight (91kg)

France

Josip-Bepo Filipi

Heavyweight (91kg)

Croatia

Joe Joyce

Super-heavyweight (91kg+)

England (P)

Frazer Clarke

Super-heavyweight (91kg+)

England (P)

Petar Belberov

Super-heavyweight (91kg+)

Hungary

WSB is the only Global Team Boxing competition where national teams go head to head in a league format. Developed by the International Boxing Association (AIBA), this unique competition brings together the best Olympic and national boxers in an exciting team format with worldwide appeal.

Season VI will sees 16 teams compete in four groups of four.  The boxers compete without vests or headguards in five three-minute rounds. There are five bouts per match and scoring is through the 10-Point-Must-System.

The 16 franchises that will compete in the 2016 season of WSB are:

Group A

Group B

Turkey Conquerors

British Lionhearts

Ukraine Otamans

Morocco Atlas Lions

China Dragons

USA Knockouts

Cuba Domodores

Mexico Guerreros

Group C

Group D

Rafako Hussars Poland

Azerbaijan Baku Fires

Caciques Venezuela

Astana Arlans Kazakhstan

Russian Boxing Team

Puerto Hurricanes

Argentina Condors

Uzbek Tigers

The British Lionhearts franchise is supported by UK Sport.  More details on the Lionhearts and WSB are available at http://www.worldseriesboxing.com/ and by following the team on twitter at @Brit_Lionhearts.