PH boxer Rogen Ladon on Olympic loss: 'I was too excited'
RIO DE JANEIRO – Rogen Ladon said he was simply overwhelmed in his Olympic debut that he failed to deliver as expected and lost to Colombia’s Yurberjen Martinez, 3-0, Monday, August 8 at Pavilion 6 of the Riocentro here.
Ladon could not hide his disappointment when he talked about his fight with a relatively unknown amateur from Turbo, Colombia whose claim to fame was a third-place finish in the 2013 Pan American Championships.
“Masyado ako na-excite (I got too excited),” said Ladon inside a 3-bedroom condominium unit which the boxers, including Charly Suarez and head coach Nolito Velasco, are sharing with Fil-American hurdles entry Eric Shauwn Cray.
Ladon, a light flyweight, said he barely slept the night before his Olympic debut.
“Halos hindi ako nakatulog kagabi (I couldn't sleep last night),” said the winner of the silver and bronze medals in the Asian and World Championships last year. He qualified to the Rio Olympics with another silver medal finish in the Asia-Oceania Qualifier in Qianjiadian, China.
Even Velasco, who’s in his fifth Olympics as coach of the Philippine team, noticed the change in Ladon the moment they stepped inside the venue and his name was called.
“Parang na-overwhelm na nasa Olympics na siya. Sinabuyan ko pa ng tubig sa mukha at sinabihan na mag-focus siya dahil lalaban na,” said Velasco, who thought that Ladon would have a relatively easy time against Martinez.
("It's like he got overwhelmed that he was in the Olympics. I splashed water on his face and told him to focus because he has to fight already.")
But Ladon struggled early on and even complained of tightness in his legs starting in the second round and until the final bell.
“Ni sa panaginip hindi siya dapat natalo ("Even in our dreams we didn't think he'd lose),” said Velasco.
Last Saturday, Filipino lightweight Charly Suarez lost to Great Britain’s Joseph Cordina in the preliminary round, and also kissed away his chances of an Olympic medal early on.
The Philippines qualified only two boxers to this Rio Olympics when top officials of the Association of Boxing Alliances of the Philippines had hoped to send as many as 5 entries.
“Malungkot din tayo siyempre. Hindi natin inasahan matalo eh (We're sad about it naturally. We didn't expect to lose),” said Velasco. – Rappler.com