AIBA president Ching-Kuo Wu is awarded an honorary degree by a Russian university ahead of a weekend in which four Irish boxers will take on Russian opponents in the European championships.
Ching-Kuo Wu is a man some Irish sports fans might remember from his fairly laughable remarks after Michael Conlan was robbed during the Olympic Games in Rio. At the time, Wu said of Conlan flipping the bird to the judges post-fight:
A lot of disciplinary action will follow. You should show proper behavior. If you are not happy about the result, you cannot humiliate in public our referee-judges.
Later on, AIBA would send a number of judges home from the Games because of judging that was "not at the level expected".
Around this time our own Gavan Casey outlined the reasons for the deep mistrust towards Wu amongst some quarters of the boxing community:
Why on Earth would any national boxing body, fighter or fan trust a man who has stood blindly by (AIBA) vice president Gafur Rakhimov, who was denied entry to Australia in 2000 when the Sydney Morning Herald broke the news that he's a drug tsar, a mafia boss and a crime lord in Central Asia?
In 2012, the Associated Press stated Rakhimov was 'one of the leaders of Uzbek organized crime with a speciality in the organized production of drugs in the countries of Central Asia.'
It would appear, however, that these sentiments towards Wu are not shared in certain parts of Russia. The 'Lesgaft National State University of Physical Education, Sport and Health' in St Petersburg have awarded him with an honorary degree in recognition of his "continuing work for the grassroots of boxing".
You don't need to be a pugilism anorak to be narrowing your eyes in suspicion here. Especially when all four female boxers left competing for Ireland at the European Women's Championships in Sofia are set to take on Russian boxers in this weekend's quarter-finals. Shauna O’Keeffe, Moira McElligott, Grainne Walsh and Christina Desmond will all step into the ring to try and secure a medal for Ireland.
It's safe to say we'll be keeping an eye on the judging.
Meanwhile, St Petersburg is the host city for the World Youth Boxing Championships which are taking place at the moment. Ireland have sent a nine-fighter squad over with Paddy Donovan, skipper Brett McGinty and Christopher O'Reilly all winning their opening bouts today.
Bizarrely, none of the Irish lads are taking on Russians in their first fights.
SEE ALSO: Michael Conlan Has Perfect Response To Scrutiny Over AIBA Outburst