Filipino boxers

Olympic boxing medalist Leopoldo Serantes dies

Beatrice Go
Olympic boxing medalist Leopoldo Serantes dies

FAMED. Leopoldo Serantes makes impactful wins in Philippine boxing history during the 1980s.

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Leopoldo Serantes, who won the 1988 Seoul Olympics bronze medal, passes away at 59 years old

Leopoldo Serantes, who delivered an Olympic boxing bronze in the 1988 Seoul Games, died on Wednesday, September 1, due to a chronic pulmonary disease.

He was 59.

Serantes bagged the light flyweight bronze in the quadrennial meet, which ended the country’s 24-year Olympic medal drought back then.

Already enshrined in the Philippine Sports Hall of Fame, Serantes is also remembered for his back-to-back Southeast Asian (SEA) Games gold medal wins in the light flyweight events.

In August, a photo of Serantes laying in bed with tubes attached circulated in the media, which showed how serious his condition was while confined at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center.

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Leopoldo Serantes: The almost forgotten Olympic hero

Leopoldo Serantes: The almost forgotten Olympic hero

Serantes made an impact in his career as a national boxer as he always entered the competition as the underdog.

In the 1985 SEA Games, Thailand dominated the medal tally by winning nine out of 13 gold medals, and while four Filipino boxers were in the finals, only Serantes emerged with a title.

It marked the start of his great career as he defeated hometown bet, Supad Boonrowd, in the final for the men’s 48kg gold medal.

After defending his gold medal in the 1987 regional biennial meet, Serantes competed in a stacked light flyweight event, where he was not tagged as a medal favorite.

But the boxer secured a semifinal berth that assured him of an Olympic bronze and settled for the color after losing to Bulgaria’s Ivailo Marinov. –

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Beatrice Go

More commonly known as Bee, Beatrice Go is a multimedia sports reporter for Rappler, who covers Philippine sports governance, national teams, football, and the UAAP. Stay tuned for her news and features on Philippine sports and videos like the Rappler Athlete’s Corner and Rappler Sports Timeout.