MANILA, Philippines -- Olympic-bound boxer Eumir Marcial hailed fellow athlete Thirdy Ravena on Sunday, revealing that the basketball star had offered to help him and his camp.
Marcial, one of four Filipino boxers who will compete in the Tokyo Games, has been at odds with the country's boxing federation as well as the Philippine Sports Commission over their support -- or lack thereof -- to national athletes.
In a recent Facebook post, Marcial revealed that he has been getting a monthly allowance worth P43,000 -- not enough to fund his training especially as he has been preparing in the United States.
On Instagram, Marcial revealed a message from Ravena that read: "Boss kamusta. Sana okay 'yung training camp mo ngayon. Nakita ko 'yung post mo sa social media, gusto ko lang sana itanong kung pwede makitulong kahit maliit na halaga lang sa mga pangangailangan niyo. Gusto ko kayo manalo ng team niyo."
For Marcial, Ravena's message showed that his fellow athletes understood his plight.
"I received this message days ago from one of the phenomenal athletes in the Philippines. The only person who can understand us most/better is our fellow athletes, and who understands our sacrifices for the country," said the boxer.
"I hope that idol Thirdy Ravena will become an inspiration and influence other Filipino athletes to help one another in different ways," he added. "I also wish that it can influence sports lovers and most especially our sports leaders."
"Mabuhay ka idol!! Mabuhay ang atletang Pilipino. Mabuhay ang Pilipinas."
This is not the first time that a Ravena has reached out to a national boxer and offered to help. In March, Irish Magno -- another Olympic-bound boxer -- revealed that Kiefer Ravena was among those who helped her after she bared that she and other athletes have not received their allowances from the government for two months.
Magno has been in Thailand since March, along with other Filipino boxers, to prepare for the Tokyo Games.
Marcial, meanwhile, has been training in his hometown of Zamboanga City since returning to the country in April. He will compete in the ASBC Asian Boxing Championships in Dubai from May 21 to June 1, along with seven other Filipino boxers.
Josie Gabuco, Maricel dela Torre, Mark Lester Durens, Marvin Tabamo, Jummilardo Ogayre, Jere dela Cruz, and John Paul Panauayan are all confirmed to compete in the Dubai tilt.
Accompanying them are three coaches, a physiotherapist, masseur and team official.
The Philippine Sports Commission says they have released P2 million worth of funds to cover the airfare, accommodation, allowance, visa fee, and insurance of the team. Additional funding of P714,750 was also approved to cover their quarantine expenses.
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