High hopes for Marcial, 3 other Olympic pugs


    BOXING secretary general Ed Picson yesterday said boxers Felix Eumir Marcial, Carlo Paalam, Irish Magno and Nesthy Petecio have solid chances of capturing the elusive gold medal in the Tokyo Olympic Games in July.

    “As we have said before, we aim high. We cannot believe otherwise. We have quadrupled our chances for gold since the 2012 London Olympic Games when we only had one qualifier,” Picson said in the Philippine Sportswriters Association online forum.

    Both 30th Southeast Asian Games gold medalists, Paalam and Petecio joined early qualifiers Marcial and Magno, who booked tickets through last year’s Asian Olympic qualifiers in Amman, Jordan, through the Olympic qualifying rankings devised by the Olympic Boxing Task Force.

    Although confident about the boxer’s prospects, Picson stressed “we are not about to get complacent.  We are not about to go there (Tokyo) half-cocked

    “‘Yang apat na ‘yan puwedeng-puwede ‘yan. All we need to do is that they are at their best when Tokyo comes around. That is the task of ABAP, the coaching staff and the support staff. The rest is up to the boxers.”

    He added that “ABAP is only an enabler but it is up to the boxers to make sure that they physically, strategically and tactically ready. And we are confident in our team that they will be able to come up with the country’s strongest performance in the Olympics by giving them the best preparation available.”

    Picson said this is one of the reasons why he is hoping that Marcial, who is currently training in Los Angeles after turning pro last year, would join the rest of the national boxing team, including the other three Olympic qualifiers, training in Thailand.