Nesthy Petecio takes home Olympic silver in boxing
MANILA, Philippines–The Olympic gold will have to wait for Nesthy Petecio.
Giving everything she had, Petecio fought like a winner despite ending up with the silver medal in the women’s featherweight final at the Tokyo Olympics on Tuesday.
Japan’s Sena Irie denied Petecio of gold as she beat the Filipino for the third time in four meetings since 2019–albeit a controversial victory.
Despite a close fight, Sena, who turned the bout into a wrestling match due to her excessive clinching, came away with a unanimous decision win.
Petecio, though, remained gracious in defeat. She offered her historic victory–making her the first Filipino female boxer to medal in the Olympics–to her team and the country.
“It means a lot to me because I dedicate this fight for my family, country and my best friend who died. I decicate this medal to my coaches, esp Nolito Velasco. He sacrificed a lot for this competition,” Petecio said.
“This is an important tournament, not for me but for my country and coaches.”
The 29-year-old Davao del Sur heroine showed throughout the tournament that she’s a force to reckon with, overcoming formidable foes including top-ranked Lin Yu-Ting of Chinese Taipei and European champion Irma Testa on her way to the gold medal round.
The heartbreaking final setback, though, won’t take away what the Philippine boxing team had already achieved in this year’s Games–a three-medal haul with Eumir Marcial and Carlo Paalam still in contention for the gold.