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Tianjin to set up world's third largest boxing center
Published on: 2010-01-29
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China's Tianjin on Tuesday signed an official agreement with the World Boxing Organization (WBO) to set up Asia's first and the world's third largest boxing center in the city and to host all-level WBO championships for 10 years.

WBO President Francisco Valcarcel said here that the Tianjin boxing center will be the third largest one in the world, following Las Vegas and New York Madison Garden Square.

"It is WBO's biggest move in recent years to join hands with Tianjin to set up the boxing center," Valcarcel said. "It will definitely boost the sport in China and Asia."

According to the plan, the boxing center contains four gymnasiums, including a center court gym, and a club for fans. It is scheduled to hold more than 50 high-level tournaments, including the WBO world championship bouts and the Asia-Pacific championships. The fights will be live broadcast by ESPN, HBO and CCTV. World boxing summits and professional boxing training will also be held here regularly.

Officials from Tianjin have been optimistic about the program which, they said, will caught eyes of more than one billion people from more than 100 countries and regions.

The first fight in the center may be held in May this year.

Tianjin, adjacent to Beijing, is one of the largest and the fast-growing cities in China.

The WBO, headquartered in Puerto Rico, boasts a great number of branches in more than 160 countries and regions and holds more than 100 fights annually.

Valcarcel, a Puerto Rican lawyer, became the WBO president in 1996.

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