PH boxers march through Asian Games opening round

Ryan Songalia
Five of the first six boxers from the Philippine team advanced to the next round with victories in the Asian Games boxing tournament
Filipino boxer Charly Suarez lands a left hand on Uzekistan’s Elnur Abduraimov during Wednesday's lightweight bout. Photo by Roslan Rahman/AFP

MANILA, Philippines – Five of the first six boxers from the Philippine team advanced to the round of 16 in the Asian Games boxing tournament at the Seonhak Gymnasium in Incheon, South Korea.

Junior welterweight Dennis Galvan was the only Philippine boxer to suffer a defeat, losing to Mongolia’s Battarsukh Chinzorig in a rematch of their President’s Cup match from July, which the Mongolian also won.

Bantamweight Mario Fernandez, 21, of Valencia City, Bukidnon, Philippines counterpunched his way to victory over Thailand’s Doncha Thathi by the scores of 30-27, 29-28 29-28, while lightweight Charly Suarez won a split decision over Uzekistan’s Elnur Abduraimov with the Gilas Pilipinas basketball team watching on by scores of 29-28 on two cards and 28-29 on Wednesday, September 24.

ABAP executive director Ed Picson tweeted that Suarez’s verdict would’ve been unanimous had he not abandoned his game plan and sought a knockout in the third round.

(RELATED: Cash incentives, pride fuel PH boxers at Asian Games)

In Thursday’s bouts, Mark Anthony Barriga, the junior flyweight who represented the Philippines at the 2012 London Olympics, scored a second round knockdown of Syria’s Hussin Al-Marin en route to a split decision win. Ian Clark Bautista, the flyweight who replaced injured 2010 Asiad gold medalist Rey Saludar, overcame a point deduction for ducking to defeat Abdallah Maher Mohammad Shamon of Jordan by the scores 29-25, 29-25 and 29-27.

Middleweight Wilfredo Lopez used his superior height and reach to outbox Turkmenistan’s Aziz Achilov to earn 29-28 scores on two cards. A third judge saw the fight 29-28 for Achilov.

Round of 16

Fernandez will face Nepal’s Puran Rai while Suarez will face India’s Akhil Kumar on Friday. Bautista will face Sangdon Choe of South Korea on Saturday, Barriga will face Tosho Kashiwasaki of Japan on Sunday and Lopez will face Iraq’s Waheed Abdulridha Waheed on Monday.

The Philippines’ two female boxers will see action on Saturday.

Reigning world flyweight champion Josie Gabuco will face Lin Yu Ting of Chinese Taipei while lightweight Nesthy Petecio will face Gulzhaina Ubbinizayova of Kazakhstan. –

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