MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine boxing contingent took home three medals, albeit without a gold, at the Tokyo Games for its best campaign yet in a single Olympic run.
Nesthy Petecio and Carlo Paalam finished with a silver medal in women’s featherweight and men’s flyweight, respectively, while Eumir Marcial bagged the bronze in the middleweight class.
Only Irish Magno didn’t make the podium after losing in the women’s flyweight quarterfinal.
“Of course, we’re very proud of our boxers. There’s four of them and only Irish wasn’t fortunate enough,” said Ed Picson, Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines (Abap) secretary general, in a TV interview Thursday after Paalam’s split decision loss to Galal Yafai of Great Britain. “The stars did not align for Irish’s campaign but we expect her to be better.”
“Two silvers and one bronze, I don’t know if that’s something to be ashamed of. It’s the best performance. Of course, we’re shooting for the gold and Carlo was there the whole time so I really take my hat to that boy.”
All four Olympic first-timers have expressed their intention to compete for a slot in Paris 2024 where they all hope to go all the way after coming up short in Tokyo.
Of the four, Paalam is the youngest at 23 years old and is barely scratching the surface of his potential while Marcial, who turned pro last year, is also far from hitting his peak.
The ever-improving Magno and Petecio, who could make an argument that she absorbed a hometown decision in the gold medal match against Japan’s Sena Irie, are both capable of reaching the summit.
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