Female boxers fight skirts ahead of Olympics

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LONDON (AP) -- Female boxers preparing for the London Olympics want to make a statement with their punches and not their clothing.

The International Amateur Boxing Association sparked charges of sexism this month by announcing that officials are discussing whether women fighters should be urged to wear skirts in the ring at the 2012 Games.

A pre-Olympic test event this week at the ExCel arena involving competitors from 21 nations has brought the issue to the forefront.

British lightweight Natasha Jones says "in other sports like (soccer) and cricket, you aren't forced to wear skirts, so I don't see why boxing should have to."