Big aims for boxing in resort

Plans to make Queenstown the Australasian boxing hub are under way.

Queenstown's Stewart Mitchell admits the resort's inhabitants ''aren't naturally boxing fans'' but is determined for to town to punch above this.

On April 12, up to 15 boxers will compete in the Rising, which Mitchell has organised to raise interest in the sport before Queenstown hosts the New Zealand National Boxing Championships in October.

About 200 boxers would be competing in the championships and Mitchell's hope is for a Queenstown boxer to win the national title.

He has planned the Rising as a ''community event'', with music by local band the Fletcherz and food supplied by Wild Earth.

''It's a taste of what the nationals is going to be about,'' Mitchell said, adding he hoped it would help Queenstown become the Australasian boxing hub.

His other goal was to create an amateur boxing club at Wakatipu High School.

Boxing had positive effects on both bullies, people being bullied as well as people with low self esteem, he said.

''I would love to be able to get it going in that high school.''