Paris Olympics

Carlo Paalam a win away from Olympic boxing return after toppling Dominican

Delfin Dioquino

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Carlo Paalam a win away from Olympic boxing return after toppling Dominican

SHOT. Carlo Paalam of the Philippines in action against Brendan Irvine of Ireland in the Tokyo Olympics.

Buda Mendes/REUTERS

Carlo Paalam advances to the semifinals of the second World Qualification Tournament and will get two tries at a coveted Paris Olympics berth

MANILA, Philippines – One more victory and Carlo Paalam will join the Philippines’ boxing cast for the Paris Olympics.

Paalam advanced to the semifinals of men’s 57kg division after soundly beating Dominican Republic’s Jose Luis delos Santos Feliz in the second World Qualification Tournament in Bangkok, Thailand, on Friday, May 31.

One of the two Filipinos still in the running in Bangkok alongside Hergie Bacyadan, Paalam scored a unanimous decision triumph by scores of 30-27, 30-27, 29-28, 29-28, 29-28.

With only three Paris berths up for grabs in his division, Paalam needs to reach the finals to secure a return trip to the Olympics, where he looks to get the job done after settling for silver in the previous Tokyo Games.

Standing in his way is India’s Sachin Siwach, who earned a 4-1 split decision win over France’s Samuel Kistohurry in the quarterfinals.

Paalam and Siwach vie for an Olympic spot on Saturday, June 1.

In case Paalam falls to Siwach, he will get another shot at Paris as the losers in the semifinals lock horns in a box off on Sunday, June 2, for the last Olympic seat.

Meanwhile, Bacyadan resumes her campaign on Saturday against Hungary’s Veronika Nakota in the last 16 of the women’s 75kg category.

Bacyadan must reach the semifinals to punch a ticket to Paris, where fellow Filipino boxers Eumir Marcial, Nesthy Petecio, and Aira Villegas will also see action. –

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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.