By James Slater
Reigning world heavyweight king Wladimir Klitschko has retained hopes and dreams of competing in the 2016 Olympic games set for Brazil in 2016: this despite the fact that he will be 40-years-old by that time. Klitschko, who won a gold way back in 1996 in Atlanta (later selling his medal, giving the money to charity) has gone on record as saying that it was the dream of both he and the late Emanuel Steward that he finished off his incredible boxing career by winning a second gold medal in 2016.
“It is well known that I really want to take part in the 2016 Olympics,” Wladimir said. “The AIBA is now working on making it possible.”
The current rules of the AIBA stipulate that, although pro boxing will be permitted in the next Olympics, the limit for pro bouts engaged in is 20. As everyone knows, Wladimir has had over three times that many pro outings. However, it seems an exception may be made for Wladimir (who, at age 40, would also be too old to participate; this current rule also needing to be sidestepped) – as the German president of amateur boxing says he is “sure” the AIBA “will be able to make an exception for such a great champion.” – (“exceptional cases can be considered depending on the value of the boxer,” said an AIBA statement said.)
Needless to say, it would be a big, big event if the younger Klitschko brother, a true international superstar, fought in Brazil in a little over three years time – but at his advanced age, would Wladimir be capable of picking up another medal? Also, some critics are bound to raise question marks over such an ultra-experienced fighter going up against an opponent far less seasoned.
Let’s see what final decision is reached by the AIBA.