A boxing tournament is being staged to determine French fighters for the 2023 European Games which is a qualification event for Paris 2024 ©Getty Images

A French qualification tournament is set to take place to determine which boxers will represent the country at the Kraków-Małopolska 2023 European Games, which in turn will serve as a qualifying event for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

From February 3 to 5 in Saint-Quintin, the hopeful contenders will compete in the thirteen Olympic weight categories in male and female divisions.

Traditionally, the French team has been made up of national champions but with the reduction in categories at the Olympic Games and the arrival of professionals it has become more complicated.

"Given the multitude of applications for Paris 2024, we considered it necessary, in consultation with the President Dominique Nato, to set up a tournament allowing everyone to express themselves in any equality," said French Boxing Federation national technical director Mehdi Nichane, as reported by L'Équipe.

"We have selected four candidates per category meeting certain criteria: having been French amateur champion or vice-champion over the past ten years, having competed in a benchmark international amateur competition over the past eight years, etc.

"This means that, in certain categories, we have only selected one or two candidates.

"From the tournament in February to the European Games in June we do not want them to rebox as pros.

"We want them to be devoted to amateurs until Paris 2024.

The three-day tournament is set to decide the French team for Kraków-Małopolska 2023 ©Getty Images
The three-day tournament is set to decide the French team for Kraków-Małopolska 2023 ©Getty Images

"Or just one or two pro fights during the few months following the European Games."

The planned tournament will only have foreign referees and judges in charge of the bouts, with each boxer facing all other fighters in their category.

Of the 21 women chosen to compete, six are professional, including Wassila Lkhadiri, national under-52-kilograms amateur champion after having fought two pro fights.

In the men's events, Jordan Rodriguez and Yanis Mehah are tipped to do well in the featherweight and welterweight competitions, respectively.

The 2023 European Games are due to take place from June 21 to July 2 with boxing tournaments set to be contested at the Nowy Targ Arena.

Boxing is then due to take place at Paris 2024 from July 27 to August 10, although the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has threatened to remove the sport from the Games due to governance issues within the International Boxing Association (IBA).

The IOC has already left boxing off the current sporting programme for Los Angeles 2028 and threatened to do the same in Paris after the IBA renewed its sponsorship deal with Russian state-owned company Gazprom.