October 8 - The International Boxing Association (AIBA) World Academy in the Kazakhstani town of Talgar will be officially opened on October 24, boxing's world governing body announced today.
The launch of the facility, which according to AIBA President C K Wu will "set best practice global standards for boxing education, development and performance and serve as a nucleus for the sport's growth into the future", will coincide with the World Championships - taking place in Kazakhstan's largest city Almaty - and comes after two years of work by the Kazakhstan Boxing Federation (KBF).
"By accepting AIBA's request, the KBF and the Kazakh Government have given their utmost efforts to build this Academy in the shortest time possible for the global boxing family," Wu, an architect himself, said.
"Thanks to the excellent work carried out for months by many people, the construction, which started back in the fourth quarter of 2011, has now been completed and all facilities will be operational by early 2014."
AIBA's vision is that the 20,000 metres square Academy, located in the Soldatkoe Valley on the edge of a protected ecological green zone, will become a "specialised centre of excellence for AIBA national federations", providing training facilities for athletes, experts, coaches, judges, doctors, sport managers and administrators alike.
As well as an "über-modern gym and boxing halls", the building will feature 10 training rings, a 25m swimming pool, administrative offices, a 168-bed hotel, restaurant, cafe, dining room, football field and running track, as well as 21-space underground car park, which AIBA says will "be key to developing future champions".
"By having a focal point for boxing education, we have created an environment in which boxing experts can gather from around the world, and whether they are athletes, coaches or officials, they can learn from each other and our highly trained instructors," Wu said.
"The boxers themselves will benefit from elite coaching, extraordinary facilities and world class sparring and training partners from around the globe.
"This kind of forum can only serve to drive the knowledge base and thus development of our sport onwards."
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