High hopes: 4 Pinoy boxers compete in Kazakhstan

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Tuesday, July 8, 2014


THE country's four-member Team Philippines is all set to battle for honors as the 2014 President's Cup boxing tournament unfurls today until Sunday in Kazakhstan.

Donning the country's colors for the Amateur Boxing Alliances of the Philippines (Abap) are former Asian Games gold medalist Rey Saludar, a native of Polomolok, South Cotabato, two-time Southeast Asian (SEA) Games gold medalist Charly Suarez of Sawata, Davao del Norte, Dennis Galvan of Bacolod City and RogenLadon of Bago City. They are joined by coaches Boy Velasco and Elmer Pamisan.

Rey is entered in men's flyweight, Suarez in lightweight, Galvan in welterweight and Ladon in light flyweight.

Coach Velasco, in a Facebook chat with Sun.Star Davao during their stopover at the Dubai International Airport yesterday morning, said: "Hindi naminmasasabi kung ilang golds maiuuwi naming perolahat at gagawin ng mga boxers para makuha at makamit ang magandang performance. Halos lahat ng sumali ay magagaling."

The 26-year-old Suarez, who is fighting for the first time after an 18-month hiatus due to shoulders' injuries, is upbeat about his chances, saying in the vernacular, "I can do it. I've been preparing for this. May God be with me."

While the tournament will be Suarez's fourth time to be in Kazakhstan, it will be the second time for fellow Brgy. Una Boxing Team of Davao del Norte product Saludar. The latter recalled that the London Olympics qualifying in 2012 was the first time he's been to the place.

"Kutob quarter-finals rakatong qualifying. First time nako ning President's Cup. Halos parehas ra akong mamahimong kontrap ero nag-andam naman ko. Sige mi nagpraktis para sadula nani (I was only a quarter-finalist in the London qualifying. It's my first time in the President's Cup. I may be facing the same rivals but I'm ready. We've been training for the tournament)," Saludar said in an interview with Sun.Star Davao after losing an exhibition scoring bout to

Asian youth champion Ian Clark Bautista of Negros Accidental during the opening of the Sarangani Cong. Manny Pacquiao-sponsored 2014 PLDT-Abap National Amateur Boxing Championships at the Digos City Gym.

Saludar said they train thrice a day while in Manila, jogging from 6 a.m. to 7 a.m., partner play and weights training from 10 a.m. to 12 noon then practice play and sparring from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.

He said, "Sakto man among ensayo. Kaluy-anlangungta mi saGinoosa among dulasa Kazakhstan (We trained just enough. I hope God will help us in Kazakhstan)."

Their President's Cup stints is part of Abap's selection process for the Asian Games-bound national team.

Abap executive director Ed Picson earlier said all national team boxers are undergoing a selection process so that they can form the most competitive team for the 17th edition of the Games in Incheon, Korea on Sept. 19 to October 4.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on July 08, 2014.

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