The numbers are in for this year’s Cleveland Golden Gloves amateur boxing tournament.
After Saturday’s official registration and weigh-ins at the Brook Park Recreation Center, a total of 79 boxers are slated for bouts during the two-week, four-night run of the annual tournament.
The breakdown was 28 entries in the open division for experienced boxers, 27 in the novice division for those with less than 10 matches and 24 in the sub-novice ranks for first-time fighters.
Certainly, the numbers could be better. But it was just a few years ago that the event, held every year since 1929, nearly came to an end when fewer than 20 boxers bothered to enter.
“We had some guys decide to go pro, and so many of our [Junior Olympic] boxers are just 16,” said tournament director Clytee Dunn, pointing out that fighters must be 17 to enter. “So, we are very much pleased.”
While the organization was hoping to get the total to 100 entries, there are enough for full cards during the preliminary rounds. A year ago, there were 84 official entries. The numbers were 75 in 2009 and 90 in 2008.
The 83rd edition of the tournament opens Friday at 7 p.m. at 17400 Holland Road in Brook Park. Boxing continues there on Saturday and April 9. Tickets are $20 reserved, $15 general admission and $10 for 12-and-under.
The finals move to the North Hall at Cleveland Browns Stadium on April 16 at 6 p.m. Tickets are $25 general admission, $15 for 12-and-under.
Open division champions advance to the national tournament in Indianapolis, April 25-30.