Earlier this year we reported that the ever popular h Katsunari Takayama (31-8-0-1, 12) [高山 勝成] had retired from professional boxing with the hope of fighting at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. Sadly it appears those hopes took a huge hit today as the Japanese Amateur Boxing Federation appeared to suggest they would not bend their rules and allow Takayama to become an amateur again.
The fighter sent in an application to join the Amateur ranks, but from what we under-stand had the application returned to him with the JABF refusing to accept it and stating their rules don't allow people to go from being an professional to being an amateur.
From what we understand Takayama has began to consider starting a petition to make the JABF reconsider their stance on fighters going from the professional ranks to the amateur scene, but it does appear unlikely that the JABF will be in a rush to reverse their decision. In fact it seems like the Japanese federation are looking to keep the split between the pros and the amateurs, something AIBA themselves have blurred the line between in recent years, with several professional fighters competing at the 2016 Olympics.
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