“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”—Lao Tzu
When he returned from China 200 years ago, Napoleon said, “That is a sleeping dragon. Let him sleep! If he wakes, he will shake the world.”
The World Boxing Association Directorate will meet in Beijing, China, from June 21-25 to discuss issues of vital importance to the continued development of pugilism and to strengthen its ties with the Asian giant. WBA president Gilberto Jesus Mendoza, who visited China in the first quarter of 2016 to lay the groundwork for this week’s meeting, will be at the helm.
With over a 1.3 billion people living in the country (the United States by contrast has a population of 322 million) China is an enormous untapped source of boxing talent. The fact that martial arts have thrived in Asia for thousands of years makes the development of boxing in China all the more evolutionary.
In addition to laying the groundwork for the expansion of boxing on the Chinese mainland, the sweet science’s growth will inevitably improve the level of Chinese fighters. As the fighters improve, opportunities to fight for world titles in their homeland and abroad will inevitably arise.
This is the ultimate goal of boxing promoters of China. It is also a goal which the WBA shares and wholeheartedly supports.