Michael Conlon withdraws from Gee Bee multi-nations

World Elite champion Michael Conlan has withdrawn from the Irish squad for the Gee Bee multi-nations in Finland because of injury.

Michael Conlon withdraws from Gee Bee multi-nations

The Rio 2016 Olympian is nursing a slight hand knock and will skip Helsinki as a precaution leading up to August’s Olympics.

Reigning Irish Elite champions Stephen McKenna, Dean Walsh, Michael O’Reilly, and Darren O’Neill have been named on the Gee Bee squad, along with TJ Waite and Sean McComb.

Meanwhile, yesterday’s announcement by the International Boxing Association that men will not wear headguards at Rio 2016 has removed a further obstacle to pro boxers competing at the Olympics. The announcement confirms Rio 2016 will mark the first time in 32 years that male boxers have not worn headguards at the Games.

CK Wu, the president of AIBA, said last week that they want to open the doors to pros for future Olympics.

It is expected that the AIBA will amend its constitution to allow professional fighters fight at the Olympics at an AIBA extraordinary meeting in May or early June.

If passed, the rule change could see pros compete at the final Olympic qualifier in Baku, Azerbaijan in June.

However, boxing fans will be closely watching where the five (for men) invitation places to Rio 2016 (wild cards) will be distributed.

Some media yesterday claimed that multi-weight pro champion Manny Pacquiao has already received a wild card to represent his native Philippines at Rio.

Pacquiao was a personnel guest of CK Wu at last year’s AIBA World Elite Championships in Doha, Qatar.

Meanwhile, the 250 male boxers competing at Rio 2016 won’t wear headguards, but the headguard rule will remain in place for the 36 female boxers at the Games.

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