Eumir Marcial cruises in light heavy debut, braces for tougher competition

Eumir Marcial Asian Games

Eumir Marcial scores a convincing win in his opening bout at the Asian Games in Hangzhou, China.–ASIAN GAMES POOL PHOTO

HANGZHOU, China – Eumir Marcial came through with a dominant showing in his light heavyweight debut, but Irish Magno bowed out of contention as the two Olympians suffered contrasting fates at the start of the boxing competitions in the 19th Asian Games.

Marcial, 27, scored an overwhelming 5-0 victory over Dalai Gadzorig of Mongolia at the Hangzhou gymnasium to advance in the Round of 16 of the men’s 80 kg class.

The Filipino pro boxer went up in weight from being a middleweight, where he won a bronze medal in last year’s Tokyo Olympics.

While he felt good in his first bout, Marcial has yet to fully determine if he’s really fit to fight as a light heavyweight.

Eumir Marcial Asian Games

Eumir Marcial at the Asian Games in Hangzhou, China.–ASIAN GAMES POOL PHOTO

“Okay naman yung galaw ko, pero yung fighting weight ko talaga middleweight. Mas komportable talaga ako dun,” said Marcial.

(I think I was moving okay but my fighting weight is really middleweight. That’s where I’m most comfortable.)

“Hindi pa natin alam. Yung mga susunod na laban natin, pabigat na ng pabigat yung mga kalaban,” added the native of Zamboanga City.

(I can’t really gauge my performance yet at light heavyweight. Maybe in my coming fights where the competition gets tougher and tougher.)

Earlier, the 32-year-old Magno was outclassed by her younger foe in Nigina Uktamova of Uzbekistan, 5-0, in the women’s 54 kg class.

“Pinaghandaan talaga namin kung ano yung fight plan, pero hindi tayo pinalad,” said the Tokyo Olympian of Uktamova, a former gold medal winner in the World Youth Boxing Championship, who clinched a berth in the quarterfinals.

(We prepared really hard and thought about our fight plan but we weren’t fortunate to win.)

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The loss of Magno and Aira Villegas left Olympic silver medalist Nesthy Petecio to carry the fight for the women’s boxing team. The former world champion is set to see action on Sept. 29 against top seed Lin Yu Ting of Chinese-Taipei in the 57 kg class.


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