By Tom Degun

luke_campbell_14-09-11September 15 - GB Boxing has selected a 12-man team to compete in the 2011 AIBA World Championships in Baku, Azerbaijan, later this month, with 2008 European champion Luke Campbell (pictured)  likely to lead the British medal charge.

The competition takes place from September 26 to October 8 and is an Olympic qualifier, meaning that the fighters who reach at least the quarter-final stage will be eligible for a place at London 2012.

The British team is made-up of boxers from Scotland, England and Wales with the majority expected to get to at least the quarter-finals.

Campbell will be one of those fighters as the 24-year-old 56kg bantamweight from Hull has recently recovered the form from three years ago that saw him become the first Englishman since 1961 to win a European amateur title.

He will be joined by Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games champion and two-time European silver medallist Tom Stalker from Liverpool who will fight in Baku at 64kg and be another strong medal prospect.

Another Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games champion is in the squad in the form of English heavyweight Simon Vallily (pictured), while two silver medallists from India are also in the team with 75kg boxer Anthony Ogogo of England and 64kg fighter Josh Taylor from Scotland hoping to go one better than they did in Delhi.

England's 52kg star Khalid Yafai - a 2010 European silver medallist and Beijing Olympian - is another strong medal prospect as is the team's youngest member Charlie Edwards after the 49kg boxer from Croydon won bronze at the European Championships earlier this year.

The Welsh duo of 52kg boxer Andrew Selby and 69kg star Fred Evans will also be confident after the pair both won gold at this European Championships in Turkey recently, although Selby will be wary of Pakistan's Haroon Khan after the brother of world champion Amir beat him at the Commonwealth Games last year.

The squad is completed by a trio of English fighters with 60kg Martin Ward, 69kg Scott Cardle and 91+kg Anthony Joshua all hoping to book a spot at the London 2012 Olympics next year which will take place at the ExCeL at London Docklands.

"The World Championships is very much the focus for this year and will be even tougher than normal as it is an Olympic qualifying event so all of the top nations will have been working to ensure their boxers are in peak condition for this tournament," said GB Boxing's performance director Rob McCracken.

"The squad is in very good shape and is looking to build on the success we have had so far in 2011 where our boxers have shown they are more than capable of holding their own and winning medals against the world's best.

"This will be the biggest challenge the boxers have faced so far, but as long as they maintain the standards of performance they have set for themselves this year, they will have every chance of qualifying for London and securing the opportunity to compete on the greatest stage of all."

In addition to the GB Boxing team, Welsh pair Sean McGoldrick (pictured), who competes at 56kg, and Joe Cordina, who fights at 60kg, have been chosen by the Welsh selectors and will also compete at the Championships but as part of the Wales team rather the GB team.

Meanwhile, as part of their final preparations, the GB team will spend a week at a training camp in Bugeat, France, before flying to Baku on September 21, ahead of the start of the event on September 26.

They will be hoping to round off a superb year that has seen the squad secure 33 medals in nine elite international tournaments against some of the world's top amateur boxing nations including Russia, Ukraine, Turkey, Poland, France, Hungary, Uzbekistan and Cuba.

The tally includes 13 gold medals, six silver and 14 bronze.

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