Earlier today the British & Irish Boxing Authority (BIBA) Vice President Gianluca Di Caro issued guidelines ahead of proposed ‘Behind Closed Doors’ Events for Live Broadcast sanctioned by the organisation.
The first event is set to take place at Northern Hotel in Aberdeen, once the Scottish Parliament authorise the return to business for Sporting Events, albeit Behind Closed Doors, which is currently expected to be either in late June or early July.
The first event is co-headlined by returning former WBO World Champion Scott Harrison versus PBC International Champion Paul Peers and a Heavyweight contest between Danny Williams, most famous for his victory over Mike Tyson, against PBC International Champion Lee Kellett.
Main support will see former 10 times World Kickboxing Champion Caitlin Foran making her Pro Boxing Debut against Carly Mackenzie.
Two further contests will feature on the card, the first sees unbeaten Gary Wilson (3-0-0) in action against Liverpool’s Scott McIntyre (4-1-0) and local lad Liam Allan will be making his professional debut against Southend’s Dan Ballard.
Whilst no date has yet been announced yet, the event will be broadcast live on Fite TV (worldwide) as well as delayed broadcast in the UK on Sports Channel Network (SCN) Channel 266 on Freeview/YouView.
As stated above Mr Di Caro earlier made a statement on the guidelines for the proposed Behind Closed Doors events, at which he said.
“The United Kingdom’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson made a statement earlier this week, regarding possible changes to the current regulations with regard to the current restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We urge everyone who can work from home to continue to do so, only those whose jobs are deemed essential or within the sectors as stated by the UK Government statement should be traveling to work. Please note: These lifting of restrictions only apply in England, the Stay at Home restrictions currently still apply in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
“According to Government guidelines Gyms are NOT deemed essential at this point, though state that gyms may be able to reopen in July, so I urge people to be responsible and maintain the current rules regarding exercise.
“The same applies to travel, if you can avoid public transport please do - Drive, Bike or Walk if you need to go out, and those that have no option but travel on public transport please cover your face and nose and wear surgical gloves - and most importantly WASH YOUR HANDS properly for a minimum of twenty seconds regularly and carry/use hand sanitiser.
“The Government plan with regard to ‘Behind Closed Doors’ events is currently stating possibly from June 1st 2020, subject to infection and death levels continuing to be on the downward curve, however we do not anticipate returning to the business of sanctioning events until late June or early July earliest.
“We already have the venue sorted for the first event, which is a hotel so all in attendance will be contained within a single location.
“We have doctors, paramedics and specialist medics arranged as well as private ambulances and even an Air Ambulance in case we are unable to use the local NHS hospital and we need to transfer any head trauma cases to a private neurology facility within 40 minutes flight time.
“All ‘behind closed doors’ events will be limited to a maximum of FIVE (5) contests per event and limited to a maximum of SIX (6) rounds.
“The only officials in attendance at an event will be the Referee, Supervisor and Time Keeper.
"Officials level may be reduced further when possible to just Referee and Supervisor, in the cases where the Supervisor is also a qualified Time Keeper.
"PPE will be worn throughout the event by the ringside officials and others in attendance and the Referee must wear a mask and surgical gloves when officiating a contest.
“It should also be noted that we will be limiting the level of corner men to TWO (2) maximum per Boxer, Cornermen will be required to wear full PPE throughout the contest.
“Also please note: That standard spit buckets will not be allowed, instead we recommend two enclosed containers along with funnel and tube. Once a contest is concluded and prior to next contest the container will be sealed and the tube and funnel disinfected before reuse.
"Each competing boxer will be required to wear a surgical-mask which may only be removed once he or she has entered the ring.
“There will be FULL Personal Protection Equipment as well as hand sanitiser available for all in attendance at the events and we will be undertaking testing ahead of the events for all people taking part as well as regular taking of temperatures of those in attendance at the venue.
“Rapid result testing will be undertaken at the venue, Professor Graham provides information regarding testing below.
“HOWEVER whilst the plan is in place for ‘behind closed doors’ events for TV for when the restrictions are lifted, provisionally from 1st June, we cannot see these taking place, even with the precautionary practices we have applied during the COVID-19 pandemic, before mid to late June 2020 and possibly later as the BIBA policy for ‘getting back to business’ is that until the infection and death rates are drastically reduced the British & Irish Boxing Authority will NOT even consider giving permission for these events to go ahead, in order to protect the NHS as well as those participating at the events.
“Our reasoning for this is whilst infection and death rates are lower than those even just one week ago, both the infection and death rates in the past week are still too high to safely consider returning to business as normal.
“Myself personally will be continuing to observe the long standing ‘Stay at Home’ and ‘Social Distancing’ advice and urge all BIBA members to do the same wherever possible.
“I will now hand over to the British & Irish Boxing Authority’s Chief Medical Officer Professor Michael Graham to discuss testing, this includes pre all events.”
Professor M.R. Graham MBChB; JCPTGP; PhD; FRSM; MPhysoc; BASEM; MICR; MCSFS; PCCMH; APIL Expert; FSB
Chief Medical Officer (CMO)
British & Irish Boxing Authority (BIBA)
“Testing will be mandatory for everyone in attendance at an event.
“BIBA are fully qualified to provide the Corona Virus tests to determine immune status and infection status at the next available contest on all Boxers and associated coaching and training staff and attendees.
“BIBA has accredited Forensic Scientists, to conduct SARS-Co V-2, (COVID-19) Antibody Tests, using the BioMedomics COVID-19 IgM/IgG Rapid Test Kits.
“The testing kits are manufactured by BioMedomics and distributed by Oxford Biosystems and are MHRA, EU and FDA accredited testing kits available in the UK.
“The tests can be conducted at any residence or venue.”