2017 was extremely successful for Bulgarian boxers. Shortly after the Bulgarian Boxing Federation announced that during the year their boxers had won 136 medals, Bulgarians returned with another 8 medals from the Moldavian BeltInternational Boxing Tournament in the category for schoolboys and young men of up to 22 years of age - 6 gold, 1 silver and 1 bronze. Thus, the national team’s total score for the year totaled 144 medals from international competitions in all categories, 28 of them from European Championships. "This is a motivation for us –coaches have been working hard in order for Bulgarian boxing to progress." This was what Head Coach of the National team Joel Solersaid in special interview for Radio Bulgaria. The Cuban became head of the Bulgarian team in November 2015.
“For me, the most important thing this year was that the national team as a whole made considerable progress. In 2017 Daniel Asenov (52 kg) defended his European titletwice in the age group of up to 22 years and so for the fourth time he conquered the European boxing peak. Duringthe extremely strong Strandzha Cup, which included contestants from 39 countries, we had 6 finalists. We won 3 gold and 3 silver medals. We then participated in the European Championships in Romania and showed that the Bulgarians are among the best.”
At European level Bulgarian boxers have been enjoying recognition and respect, Joel Soler says. Bulgarian Boxing Federation and its President Krasimir Ininski have been doing everything they could to ensure athletes have perfect conditions for training. For the second time, the Bulgarian boxers had a training camp in Cuba, which was extremely useful to them. During these camps they have the opportunity to face the best Cuban boxers. A project that was launched at the beginning of the year by the Boxing Federation and its President KrasimirIninski also turned out very successful. In its framework talented boxers aged 15-16 years trained together with the competitors of the national team at the Belmeken Sports Center. These sessions have strong motivational effect on young boxers and inspire them to strive for medals.
2017 will be remembered with the fact that Emilia Grueva, a member of the Managing Board of the Bulgarian Boxing Federation, became the first Bulgarian woman to receive a position in the management of the International Boxing Association (AIBA), Mr. Solerpointed out. Grueva was elected chair of the AIBA Women's Commission. "The appointment of Emilia Grueva is another huge recognition for the good work and the activity of the Bulgarian Boxing Federation and we are very proud of that," President KrassimirIninski said.
In 2018, women and men expect the European and World Championships. For men, the year looks more relaxed but preparation for the next 2019 will be of great importance.
“In 2018 there are not many large competitions in the men's calendar. The main competition we will focus on is Strandzha Cup," Joel Soler says. “Then there is a European Championship in Romania for the age category of 18 to 22 years, in which we would take part with several athletes. Four of our boxers will participate in the World Series Boxing WSB. Daniel Asenov /52 kg./ and Christian Dimitrov /91 kg./ will be boxing for France. RadoslavPantaleev /81kg./ and Peter Belberov /91 kg./ will be part of the UK team. This shows that other federations are interested in the participation of Bulgarian boxers in the World SeriesBoxing.”
In 2018 Bulgarian boxers will continue to train hard in order toget the most out of the 2019 calendar, part of which are the European Olympics, the European Championship and the World Cup, which is also qualification for the Tokyo Olympics.
English: Alexander MarkovPhotos: bgboxing.org