Eumir Marcial primed and on a roll
Eumir Felix Marcial got more good news on Monday, hours after the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) assured that it will still back him up even if he sheds his amateur status.
The PSC, through Commissioner Ramon Fernandez, clarified on Sunday night that contrary to earlier conjecture, Marcial will retain his standing as a national athlete and will continue to receive his allowances. The agency also said it would provide “100-percent support” to both his Olympic and professional bids.
And by the time Sen. Manny Pacquiao told the athlete already qualified for the Tokyo Olympics next year that he has his back covered after he signs as a professional, Marcial felt like he was on top of the world, a source said.
Marcial is on the verge of signing his first pro contract. The source said the deal is “90-percent complete” with Pacquiao’s MP Promotions, the last entity left to land his signature after Hall of Fame manager Shelly Finkel backed out at the last minute due to confidentiality issues NOT caused by Marcial’s camp. Although he walked away, Finkel assured Eumir of his help.
In an earlier talk with Inquirer sports editor Francis T.J. Ochoa, Marcial said he made sure that a “service to the country” clause is included in his contract since he takes pride in wearing the national colors.
The young boxer reiterated to Ochoa that the Olympics will always be his top priority even as a pro.
“I’m not asking to be treated as someone special,” he said. ”I will do anything asked of me. I will train with my teammates … doing the same things they do. I will eat the same food and follow the same program.”
A statement from the Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines, Eumir’s national sports association, included this intriguing line from president Ricky Vargas: “We wish him the best and if Eumir is willing and able when the Olympics come around, we will gladly welcome him to the lineup.”
After a brief but substantive phone chat with Pacquiao, the 25-year-old Zamboangeño said: “I felt so inspired hearing the voice of the senator. Him assuring me of his wholehearted backing really makes me doubly inspired to turn pro and at the same time aim for that elusive Olympic gold.”
“What I wanted to hear was that Manny Pacquiao was aware of what was being offered to me,” Marcial said. According to him, the eight-division champ said: “Alam ko, huwag kang mag-aala. Ako ang bahala sa’yo.” (I know what’s being offered to you. Don’t worry. I will take care of you).
Marcial is expected to earn at least P10 million within 10 days after signing the contract with MP Promotions.
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