New Delhi | Jagran Sports Desk: The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has included MC Mary Kom in a 10-strong athlete ambassadors group to represent bxers in the build-up to next year’s Tokyo Olympic Games.

The six-time world champion will represent the Asian bloc in the group. The Asia bloc also includes Ukrainian legend Vasyl Lamachenko (Europe) and 2016 Olympic gold-winner Julio Cesar La Cruz (Americas).

“One female and one male ambassador per region will take on the role of engaging with the boxing community both in person and digitally,” said the IOC in a statement.

“They will also help the Boxing Task Force (BTF) take into account the athletes' voice in all areas of its planning for the qualification events and the boxing tournament at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020,” the statement further said.

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Kom, 36, recently surpassed herself to become the most successful boxer in the history of the world championships when she claimed her eighth medal, a bronze, at the marquee event's latest edition in Russia.

Boxing has been in administrative turmoil after the IOC stripped the International Boxing Association (AIBA) of the rights to conduct the Olympic competition earlier this year, taking complete control of even the qualifying process. It also asserted that the AIBA failed to put its house in order as far as administrative integrity and management of finances was concerned.

“In all of the work of the Boxing Task Force we want to put boxers first. We are delighted with this group of diverse and inspirational athletes who make up the Athlete Ambassadors…,” said Morinari Watanabe, IOC Member and Chair of the Boxing Task Force.

“...look forward to working closely with them in all areas of our decisions and event planning to make sure the athletes are not only at the centre of our work, but also actively engaged in it,” he added.

The Athletes Ambassadors' Group:

Men: Lukmo Lawal (Africa), Julio Cesar La Cruz (Americas), Jianguan Asiahu (Asia), Vasyl Lamachenko (Europe), David Nyika (Oceania)

Women: Khadija Mardi (Africa), Mikaela Mayer (Americas), MC Mary Kom (Asia), Sarah Ourahmoune (Europe), Shelley Watts (Oceania)

(With PTI inputs)

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma