MALAYBALAY CITY (MindaNews / 03 August) – Filipina boxer Nesthy Petecio appeared to be the aggressor and landed cleaner shots, but the judges saw it differently and gave the day to Japanese boxer Sena Irie in the women’s featherweight gold medal bout at the Tokyo Olympics on Tuesday.
The loss frustrated the Philippines’ dream of another shining moment in sports after the country won its first ever Olympic gold medal courtesy of weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz.
Sena refused to be drawn into a brawl with Petecio, opting instead to wrestle each time the Filipina unleashed combinations.
The “heartbreaking loss,” as Filipino boxing analysts called the outcome, came a few hours after Filipino boxer Carlo Paalam booked a ticket to the semifinal round of the men’s flyweight class, and assured the country of another medal by ousting Olympic champion Shakhobidin Zoirov in the men’s quarterfinal bout.
Petecio, like the other Filipino medalists at the Tokyo Olympics — Diaz, Paalam and Eumir Marcial — hails from Mindanao.
EJ Obiena, a native of Tondo, Manila, will try to bag another medal for the country in the pole vault finals at 6 p.m. Tuesday. (H. Marcos C. Mordeno/MindaNews)