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Olympic boxing qualifiers in London suspended from Monday evening

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Ireland's Michael Nevin (left) and Netherland's Max Van der Pas compete in the preliminaries of the Men's Middleweight competition during day three of the Boxing Road to Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualifying event at the Copper Box Arena, London.

Ireland's Michael Nevin (left) and Netherland's Max Van der Pas compete in the preliminaries of the Men's Middleweight competition during day three of the Boxing Road to Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualifying event at the Copper Box Arena, London.

PA

Ireland's Michael Nevin (left) and Netherland's Max Van der Pas compete in the preliminaries of the Men's Middleweight competition during day three of the Boxing Road to Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualifying event at the Copper Box Arena, London.

The Olympic boxing qualifying tournament in London will be suspended after the conclusion of Monday's evening session, officials have announced.

The decision to call off the event was made midway through the third day of action due to concerns over the escalating coronavirus crisis and the impact on athletes' travel arrangements.

It is immediately unclear whether the initial results in the competition will stand, and throws an already hard-hit Tokyo 2020 qualification process into further chaos.

A statement read: "In light of significant recent changes in the coronavirus situation and growing concerns relating to the welfare of athletes, officials, staff and volunteers, the IOC's Boxing Task Force (BTF) has taken the decision to cancel the rest of the Road to Tokyo Boxing Qualifier from Tuesday 17 March 2020.

"The decision has been made in conjunction with the Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the Boxing Road to Tokyo Qualifying event amid the increasing global travel restrictions and quarantine measures which are impacting on the travel plans of athletes, teams and officials and affecting their ability to return home."

The International Olympic Committee was already due to meet officials from national Olympic committees and sports federations on Tuesday to discuss qualification procedures for the Games.

Officials in London had initially taken the decision to move the competition behind closed doors on Monday.

Earlier today at the Copper Box, two more Irish boxers had advanced to the last 16 at the Olympic qualifying tournament.

Belfast's Aidan Walsh fashioned an impressive performance to secure a unanimous 5-0 points win over Estonian Pavel Kaminin while middleweight Michael Nevin secured a 4-1 majority win victory over Pas der Van from Holland.

However, flyweight Carly McNaul proved no match for Britain's Charley-Sian Davidson.

Middleweight Michael Nevin had a difficult time against Dutchman Pas der Van but a solid first and third round paved the way, though curiously one judge awarded all three rounds to the loser.

Tonight, all eyes will be on team captain Brendan Irvine and European featherweight champion Kurt Walker as they bid to secure Olympic slots.

Online Editors