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Boxing is a combat sport and involves fighting with the fists. Boxing rivalry means two or more fights between the same fighters. Who can forget the notable rivalries of boxing – Jack Dempsey vs. Gene Tunney, Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier, Lennox Lewis vs. Evander Holyfield, and other famous bouts? Muhammad Ali, born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr., is one of the world’s greatest heavyweight boxers, who retired with a career record of 56 wins, 37 by knockout, against 5 losses.

Boxing History

Boxing history can be traced back to ancient times, where it was depicted on the walls of tombs of Beni Hasan in Egypt, dating from about 2000 to 1500 BC. Boxing was a part of the ancient Olympics and there was no break in action in the game. It was an exhaustive and brutal sport. Boxers wound heavy leather strips around their hands and wrists, and under the Roman rule, these were tipped with metal. The Romans went even farther by creating the myrmex (“limb piercer”), which was a spur-like instrument made of bronze.

In the 17th century, boxing was actually a combination of wrestling and boxing. The word “boxing” was first used in the 18th century in England to distinguish from fighting to settle disputes and fighting under agreed rules of sport. In the early 18th century, boxing became organized with the help of royal patronage, in the form of betting or offering prizes. James Figg, an expert fencer and boxer opened a boxing academy in London in 1719. Jack Broughton, Figg’s pupil, drew up the first formal rules for boxing in 1743. Broughton also invented the first boxing gloves, known as “mufflers”, to protect both the hands and the face from blows.

Boxing first appeared in the Olympic games in 1904, and was part of the Games ever since, except in the 1912 Olympic games. Women’s boxing first appeared in the Olympic games as a demonstration bout in 1904. It was banned in most nations for most of the 20th century. The revival of Women’s boxing was initiated by the Swedish Amateur Boxing Association, which allowed events for women in 1988. The AIBA approved the first European Cup for Women in 1999 and the first World Championship for women in 2001.

Boxing Rule

The World Boxing Council Rules and Regulations govern professional boxing championship bouts, in full agreement with the local boxing commission where the contest is held. Violating these championship rules may be a cause for disqualification and/or suspension, fine, other disciplinary action of the boxer and/or loss of the bout. Only managers with legal contracts, and/or those with written authorization of the boxer they represent, can sign the World Championship Rules and Regulations. No boxer can claim lack of knowledge of the World Championship Rules and Regulations.

The contracts and the medical exam reports must be in order before the beginning of the bout. For every fight from the Minimum up to the Welterweight division, the eight (8) ounce gloves are used. For every bout from the Superwelterweight up to the Heavyweight division, the ten (10) ounce gloves must be used. The bandage must be of crepe or gauze, and their length shall be enough to protect the boxer’s hands. The adhesive tape shall be no more than 2.5 meters long and 2.5 centimeters wide for each hand. Antidoping tests are mandatory for every WBC certified title match. A boxer is not permitted to use any substance during or prior to the bout that would make him psychologically or physically superior or inferior to his opponent.

The title bout has twelve rounds of three minutes each, with one minute of rest between the end of one round and the beginning of the next, which is indicated by the sound of the bell. Scorecards are independent for each round. Three judges will each score the bout, and a non-scoring referee. The judges will score only the result of the round; any point deducted by the referee will be subtracted by the WBC representative in the master score sheet. If a boxer is legally knocked outside the ring, the downed boxer is given twenty seconds to return to the ring, without any assistance from his corner. If the boxer fails to return to the ring unassisted in twenty seconds, the bout will be stopped and he will lose by TKO. In this case, the referee must order the standing boxer to the farthest neutral corner, and the boxer must remain there until the referee orders him to resume boxing.

The bell cannot save a boxer who has been knocked down except in the last round when the bell indicates the end of the fight. If a boxer is knocked down by a clean punch at the end of a round, the referee will continue the count, and will declare him the loser by knock out if he does not get up unassisted before the count of ten seconds.

All fouls recognized by boxing authorities are penalized by warnings from the referee and point deduction(s), at the discretion of the referee, after two warnings.

Some common fouls:

1. Hitting below the belt
2. Use of elbows, shoulders or forearms.
3. Butting with the head.
4. Hitting in the back of the head.
5. Striking the kidneys or back.
6. Hitting with the inside of the glove.
7. Hitting with the back of the hand.
8. Striking with the knees, feet or any part of the legs.
9. Holding the ring ropes to hit with the other hand.
10. Hitting the opponent when part of his body is out of the ropes.

No boxer is allowed to box at any time without a mouthpiece. The referee has the authority to:

1) Instruct and supervise the corner men in their duties and responsibilities during the match, and
2) Supervise all medical care of the boxers.

The referee has the authority to inspect and confiscate any substance, material or equipment used in a corner, which he believes might violate the Rules and Regulations.

World champions are recognized in the existing weight divisions with the following limits:

Division Pounds
Minimumweight 105
Lightflyweight 108
Flyweight 112
Super Flyweight 115
Bantamweight 118
Superbantamweight 122
Featherweight 126
Superfeatherweight 130
Lightweight 135
Superlightweight 140
Welterweight 147
Superwelterweight 154
Middleweight 160
Supermiddleweight 168
Lightheavyweight 175
Cruiserweight 200
Heavyweight over 200 with no upper limit

The ratings are established by the World Boxing Council (WBC) each month, in each weight division from No. 1 to No. 30, and appoints an outstanding boxer or boxers monthly and annually.

Amateur Boxing

Amateur boxing is the version of boxing at the Olympic games. The focus is on scoring punches rather than doing actual physical damage to the opponent. The contenders wear protective headgear, and box for three rounds of three-minutes each. Each punch that lands on the head or torso is awarded a point. A referee monitors the fight to ensure that competitors use only legal blows and ensure that the boxers don’t use holding tactics to prevent the opponent from swinging. If a contender cannot continue the fight because of legal blows from the opponent, the match is concluded and the competitor still standing is declared the winner by knockout. The Golden Gloves is an annual competition for amateur boxing in the United States.To be eligible to compete in AIBA (Association Internationale de Boxe or the International Amateur Boxing Association) Boxing under AIBA Rules, the boxer should not have boxed with or against a professional boxer for a money prize or in open competition.

For Senior and Junior (U-19) boxers there are 11 weight classes in AIBA:48 kg, 51 kg, 54 kg, 57 kg, 60 kg, 64 kg, 69 kg, 75 kg, 81 kg, 91 kg, 91+ kg.

For Female and Cadet boxers there are 13 weight classes in AIBA:46 kg, 48 kg, 50 kg, 52 kg, 54 kg, 57 kg, 60 kg, 63 kg, 66 kg, 70 kg, 75 kg, 80 kg and 86 kg.


Kickboxing was known as ‘full contact karate’. Kickboxing began in the mid-seventies in the US, where karate proponents wanted a system where they could apply kicks and punches to the knockout. They were frustrated with the limitations of the primitive scoring system. The early bouts of kickboxing were fought on open matted areas, just like karate. Later, kickboxing matches were held in boxing rings. The World Kickboxing Association was formed by Americans and sent teams of kickboxers to Japan to prove their mettle. Joe Lewis, Bill Wallace, Benny Urquidez and Jeff Smith were the stars of early kickboxing games.

Boxing Odds

Boxing odds are represented as money lines. The boxing odds are based mostly on the outcome of the bout. But there are other factors that may come into play when deciding the boxing odds. Knockouts, draws, the duration of the bout, all of these are deciding factors of the boxing odds. For example, the boxing odds for a bout featuring Eric Lucas vs. Danny Green are +110 vs. -154. The draw is at +2000. The negative sign indicates that Danny Green is the favorite.

Boxing Bet

The bout becomes official for placing the boxing bet, only when the bell is sounded, signifying the start of the opening round. If the boxing bet is a tie / draw, some sportsbooks may pay only for a boxing bet on a draw. The boxing bet is not refunded on any fighter. A boxing bet can be placed based on each round, if the fight ends in a points-verdict. A technical knockout, knockout and disqualification are also considered for boxing bet purposes. The fights must be held within one week of the specified date for the boxing bet to have action.


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