The World Boxing Council run by Boxing power broker Jose Suleiman is developing a series being called ‘The World Cup’. Complete plans are still being kept under wraps and may not be finalized, but the kick off of the event will be later this year and is scheduled to take place in Mexico City. The WBC is talking about kicking off the World Cup with four separate weight classes, including the Heavyweight division.
The truth is that the WBC has been planning the World Cup for several years, but plans never seem to come to fruition. Originally scheduled for 2011, the event start was postponed until 2012 and later had a scheduled start date of February 15th, 2013. The format was at some point trimmed from 8 weight classes down to four.
The original stated aim of the WBC Word Cup was to use the revenues generated by the tournament to fund a retirement fund for boxers, and the notorious organization event went so far as to promise to hire an outside company to oversee the fund and the distribution of that money.
The four weight classes selected will sign up to twelve fighters in each weight class, meaning the cup will kick off an elimination or qualifying round with 48 fighters involved. The entire proceedings should end within two years, with an actual ‘World Cup’ going to the Federation with the most winners. There are plans to continue the ‘World Cup’ format on an ongoing basis with a new edition being planned bi-annually.
If the format ever gets off the ground, it will be very difficult and resource-taxing to keep a tournament of that scale going in this sport. Look at SHOWTIME, which recently produced tournaments and the trouble they had keeping a tournament together. Their Super Six tournament of six fighters had a nice format, but it took close to two years and roughly half a dozen replacement fighters to finish that tournament. Their next tournament, in the Bantamweight division, was scaled down to just four fighters and SHOWTIME appears to have scrapped the format altogether.
But tournaments are a bettors dream, so WBC it is time to bring on ‘The World Cup’.