Boxing: Eumir Marcial to focus on Olympic chase, says POC president


Posted at Aug 19 2023 08:15 AM

Filipino boxer Eumir Marcial. File photo. Ryan Hafey, Premier Boxing Champions
Filipino boxer Eumir Marcial. File photo. Ryan Hafey, Premier Boxing Champions

MANILA -- Filipino boxer Eumir Marcial will focus on his chase for a gold medal in the Olympic Games after his supposed fifth professional fight, scheduled for later this month, was canceled.

This, according to Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) President Abraham "Bambol" Tolentino.

"Eumir will be coming home from the US as soon as possible and to join the national boxing team and work on his Australian visa," Tolentino said Friday.

The national boxing team will hold a training camp in Canberra starting September 1. 

Marcial (4-0) last fought a professional match in February, dispatching Ricardo Villalba of Argentina via a second round knockout. He was supposed to fight again in August, but it was re-scheduled for September which will conflict with the Hangzhou Asian Games.

Tolentino brokered Marcial's availability for the Asian Games -- a Paris Olympics qualifier -- with MP Promotions, whose president, Sean Gibbons, agreed to write off the Tokyo Olympics bronze medalist’s training expenses for his supposed fifth pro fight in the US.

"Sean [Gibbons] readily agreed that Marcial focuses on Hangzhou and go after his Olympic dream," said Tolentino.

But the POC chief warned that Marcial is in for a tough campaign in the Asiad, where he will be fighting in the light-heavyweight (81kg) division instead of his preferred middleweight (71kg) class. The middleweight division -- where Marcial won bronze in the Tokyo Olympics -- is not included in the Hangzhou program.

Moreover, he will need to reach the final after it was decreed that only the boxing finalists in Hangzhou will qualify for Paris—no longer the traditional semifinals cut off.

Marcial is aware of the challenge and vowed to go all out for his Olympic dream.

"It's now or never," he declared.


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