MANILA, Philippines – Ideally, the Association of Philippine Boxing Alliances (Abap) would have wanted to send six Filipino boxers to the next Tokyo Olympics.
Yet four qualified for the Tokyo Games led by middleweight contender Eumir Marcial and Abap general secretary Ed Picson, each having a legitimate shot at taking home the elusive gold.
“I think Coach Don (Abnett) will attest that we actually expected more, maybe one or two more, but the world qualifying tournament was canceled and they had to go to qualifying,” Picson said in an interview with SportsIQ.
“We are happy with the four that we have. I think this is a formidable formation. All of them are quite capable of winning a gold medal. “
Joining Marcial are women’s featherweight Nesthy Petecio, flyweight Carlo Paalam and women’s flyweight Irish Magno.
As part of the PH boxing team’s preparation for the games, the four spent time training abroad with Marcial at a camp in the US, while Petecio, Magno, and Paalam were able to hone their skills in Thailand.
Picson also expressed his gratitude to the MVP Sports Foundation for funding the training camp for national boxers.
“We are very lucky. Not all NSAs have the benefit of a private benefactor and one as generous and concerned about our sport and our athlete as the MVP Sports Foundation, ”he said.
“It helps a lot that Mr. Pangilinan is a sports fanatic. We all know that he likes to watch sports activities and in fact he devoted himself to advocating helping sports due to his love of sports. It’s a genuine defense. “
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