Eyeing first pro bout, Eumir still lists Games gold as top priority
Eumir Felix Marcial has been training so hard in Los Angeles the past month that he feels he’s ready to launch his professional career anytime soon.
“I can do it this week,” the 25-year-old boxer, who arrived in Los Angeles last Oct. 12 to gear up for his pro debut and the anticipated Tokyo Olympics stint in July, said in Filipino.
He made it clear, though, that he is focusing on getting the first gold medal for the Philippines in the Summer Games.
Marcial graced the online Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum on Tuesday together with Manny Pacquiao Promotions chief Sean Gibbons.
He said moving to Los Angeles to train under Freddie Roach, Justin Fortune and Marvin Somodio is the best thing that happened to him during this pandemic.
“I’m so blessed to get here,” said Marcial, who gets to do what Sen. Manny Pacquiao, Filipino boxing icon, does—run at Griffith Park and train at the Wild Card Gym.
The pride of Zamboanga also gets to spar with fighters who are more experienced and better than him. He said he’s had close to 15 sparring sessions since October.
“It would have been harder to get this quality of training if I was back home,” Marcial said.
Marcial, who fights in the welterweight division, arrived in the United States weighing 185 pounds but has dropped to 170, just within reach of the limit of 160 pounds.
Gibbons said because of his size, it’s very difficult for Marcial to even find sparring partners in the Philippines.
Besides, Marcial said the other Olympic contenders are in Europe training despite the pandemic. If he opted to stay home, he would have been left behind in terms of training.
Gibbons said launching Marcial’s pro career has taken the back seat to the latter’s bid to win the first Olympic gold.
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