By CARLO ANOLIN
Olympian Eumir Felix Marcial and Rogen Ladon advanced to their respective gold medal rounds while James Palicte, Josie Gabuco, and Riza Pasuit suffered stinging defeats in the semifinals of the boxing competitions in the 31st Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi, Vietnam Thursday night.
The Bac Ninh Gymnasium saw a fair share of ups and downs for the national boxing team as Marcial dominated Thai foe Peerapat Yeasungnoen and won via referee stopped contest (RSC) in the men’s middleweight while Ladon also outclassed Thai opponent Thanarat Saengphet, 4-1, in the men” flyweight category.
Both Marcial and Ladon, both assured of a silver medal.
Marcial dominated Yeasungnoen from the get-go, unloading powerful body shots to push back the Thai.
The end came after the Olympic bronze medal winner battered the Thai with crisp combinations, enough to force the referee to intervene and halt the match in the second round.
Ladon, for his part, bucked a slow start before piling up points in the second and third rounds to turn back Saengphet with his precise counter-punching and short jabs.
Meanwhile, Palicte, the reigning light welterweight regional champion, seemed to lose steam in the third round as Indonesian contender Farrand Papendang capitalized on the situation and pulled off an upset 4-1 win.
Papendang landed powerful combinations the entire third round when Palicte, who suddenly became stagnant and inactive, seemed to fall down on his knees and went on the defensive stance.
Gabuco also absorbed a 3-2 loss at the hands of Thailand’s Chuthamat Raksat as the third round slump proved to be costly for the Filipina, who won the gold medal in the light flyweight division in 2019 edition here in the Philippines.
Pasuit, the 2019 SEAG lightweight silver medalist, couldn’t land proper punches against a taller opponent in home bet Vuong Thi Vy of Vietnam in the 54-57kg class.
Reigning featherweight gold medalist Nesthy Petecio, fellow Tokyo Olympian of Marcial, will continue the national team’s campaign on Friday, May 20 in the semifinal round.