Two of three Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines (ABAP) boxers in the semifinals made it to the finals of the 22nd President’s Cup being held at the Palembang Sports and Convention Center in Palembang, Indonesia.
Nesthy Petecio, who won silver in the Women’s World Championships in Jeju, Korea in November and a gold medalist in the Myanmar Southeast Asian Games (SEAG), stamped her class over game Japanese Shimoto Aya, to score a unanimous decision and set up a championship match with Thai veteran Paemwilat Laopeam.
Air Force man Mario Fernandez of Bukidnon, himself a Myanmar SEAG gold medal winner and a bronze medalist in the Incheon Asian Games, again elicited cheers from the gallery as he displayed ring mastery against NGS Jayawira of Sri Lanka.
Fernandez faces Tsenbataar of Mongolia in the finals.
Joel Bacho fell short in his semis bout with another Mongolian, Chin Zorig, losing on points, 29-28 on all 3 judges’ cards. He settles for bronze.
ABAP President Ricky Vargas, in an overseas call to executive director Ed Picson exhorted the Filipino boxers to “do their best for flag and country and know that we are all praying for your success and safety always.”
ABAP coaches here are Pat Gaspi, Roel Velasco and Gerson Nietes.
Among the 19 teams entered here, the top teams going into the Finals are Mongolia with four finalists, India (4) host Indonesia (3), Russia (2), Japan (2) Vietnam (2), Thailand (2) and the Philippines (2).