Barriga out of the Olympics
Filipino boxer Mark Barriga lost to Kazakhstan's Birzhan Zhakypov, 17-16 on Saturday, August 4, eliminated from the Olympics

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Filipino boxer Mark Barriga lost to Kazakhstan’s Birzhan Zhakypov, 17-16 on Saturday, August 4 at their round of 16 light flyweight fight at the London Olympics.

The loss ends the Olympic stint of Barriga, the Philippines’ best bet in the Games.

Barriga lost to Zhakypov in the first round, 5-4, after the latter came out more agressive and Barriga was limited to counterpunching.

But the Filipino fighter made up for it, coming out stronger on the second round, and leading Zhakypov 10-8 before he entered the third round.

The final three minutes of the fight proved to be the downfall for Barriga. Both Barriga and Zhakypov received a warning each for wrestling-like moves, but Barriga later received a penalty for headbutting, which granted Zhakypov two extra points.

Barriga was also overpowered several times by a frustrated Zhakypov in the third round, and was lifted and brought to the floor by his bigger opponent.

Towards the end, the 19-year-old Filipino started to wear out, moving visibly slower and becoming less agressive.

The penalty Barriga received proved to be costly, as Zhakypov came out victorious by only one point. Without the penalty, Barriga would’ve won the fight.

This is the fourth Olympics in a row that a Filipino boxer failed to advance past the second round.

The last time a boxer won in the Olympics was when Onyok Velasco took home the silver medal in the 1996 Atlanta Games. That was also the Philippines’ last Olympic medal.

Three more athletes from Team Philippines are still competing in London, namely Marestella Torres and Rene Herrera for track and field, and Daniel Caluag for BMX.-

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