MANILA, Philippines – Capitalizing on the reinstatement of women’s boxing in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, Filipina pugilists enthralled the crowd inside the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City with their gold-clinching performances on Monday, December 9.
Josie Gabuco and Nesthy Petecio aced their assignments in the finals of their respective weight classes, attesting that their bracket deserves to be a staple in the regional biennial meet.
Gabuco drew a thunderous chorus of cheers as she successfully defended her women’s light flyweight trinket, routing Indonesia’s Endang Endang in the division finals by way of clear-cut unanimous decision, 5-0.
Her patented left hook and looping overhand right were the two vital pieces in copping her fifth straight SEA Games gold medal, clobbering those two blows whenever she wanted.
Although she gave away a serious disadvantage in terms of height, it never bothered Gabuco as she effectively closed the distance and rattled her opponent by throwing solid punches from both hands.
Investing more of her punches on the body in the 3rd and last round, it was clear as daylight that Gabuco had it in the bag when the announcer declared her as the victor on the scorecards.
Following up on Gabuco’s triumph, Petecio authored a masterful beating of Burmese rival Nwe Ni Oo, 5-0, in the women’s featherweight championship.
Petecio bided her time to break down Nwe Ni Oo brick by brick, cherry-picking her punches with speed and precision while limiting her opponent’s offense with her tactical pace.
The 27-year-old native of Santa Cruz, Davao del Sur punctuated the final frame by making Nwe Ni Oo miss her shots and then stringing together quick combinations to secure the unanimous decision and the gold medal.
Meanwhile, two Filipinas fell short in accomplishing gold-medal finishes on the last day of the boxing competition, settling for a silver hardware apiece in the process.
Irish Magno bowed to Vietnam’s Nguyen Thi Tam in the women’s flyweight finals via majority decision, 4-1, while lightweight Riza Pasuit yielded to Thailand’s Sudaporn Seesondee, 4-1. – Rappler.com
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