Serik Konakbayev has registered his appeal with the Court of Arbitration for Sport ©CAS

Kazakhstan's Serik Konakbayev has claimed he should have been included on the list of candidates for the Presidency of the International Boxing Association (AIBA) and has officially appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport against the decision to omit him.

Konakbayev's nomination forms for President were received on September 24, a day after the September 23 at midnight deadline set by AIBA in its statutes.

The President of the Asian Boxing Confederation claims, however, that his nominations should be valid under Swiss law as September 23 was a Sunday and, therefore, not a working day.

Konakbayev was expected to challenge interim President Gafur Rakhimov in the election scheduled for AIBA's Congress in Moscow on November 3.

He is hoping the CAS will uphold his appeal so he can stand against Rakhimov for the top job at the embattled organisation.

"I am extremely surprised not to be included in the final list of Presidential candidates, and believe it is in the best interest of our sport to have a contested election so that AIBA’s Member Federations can choose the leader that they want on 3 November," Konakbayev said.

His omission from the list means Rakhimov, who remains on a United States Treasury Department sanctions list as "one of Uzbekistan's leading criminals", is set to be elected without a vote at the Congress.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has explicitly warned that Rakhimov's candidacy puts boxing's place on the Olympic programme in serious jeopardy.

The IOC has "maintained its freeze on all contacts with AIBA except at a working level" because of the issues at the troubled governing body, including Rakhimov's election as President.

Serik Konakbayev was not on the list of candidates revealed by AIBA ©AIBA
Serik Konakbayev was not on the list of candidates revealed by AIBA ©AIBA

It has led to concern within the AIBA membership over boxing's future as an Olympic sport, although the IOC offered hope here last week when they promised to "do its upmost to ensure that the athletes do not have to suffer under these circumstances and will protect their Olympic dream".

The IOC also warned, though, that their recognition of AIBA as an International Federation was in doubt owing to the ongoing issues within the governing body.

Removing the recognition of AIBA would mean they would be not able to organise an Olympic boxing competition.

IOC Presidential spokesperson Mark Adams declined to give further details on how they would go about ensuring an Olympic boxing event is still held at Tokyo 2020 even if they sanction AIBA but insidethegames understands a new organisation could be specially established to oversee competition in the Japanese capital. 

Rakhimov recently claimed to Agence-France Presse that he has launched an attempt to ensure he is not the only candidate for President.

The Uzbek, who denies involvement in organised crime, said he had "asked our lawyers and the administration to see if anything can be done to eliminate such doubts or questions, and if possible allow for more potential candidates to run".