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Nesthy Petecio not keen on going pro for now

/ 08:16 PM August 03, 2021
Philippines' Nesthy Petecio (red) and Japan's Sena Irie fight during their women's feather (54-57kg) boxing final bout during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Kokugikan Arena in Tokyo on August 3, 2021.

Philippines’ Nesthy Petecio (red) and Japan’s Sena Irie fight during their women’s feather (54-57kg) boxing final bout during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Kokugikan Arena in Tokyo on August 3, 2021. (Photo by Luis ROBAYO / AFP)

MANILA, Philippines–Filipino Olympic silver medalist Nesthy Petecio is not too keen on turning pro.

“At least not for now,” she told Filipino reporters during a special edition of the Philippine Sportswriters’ Association Forum on Tuesday, just hours after settling for second place behind Japan’s Sena Irie in the boxing event of the Tokyo Olympics at the iconic Ryōgoku Kokugikan.

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It has, however, crossed her mind. Petecio said she would enter prizefighting if it brought her closer to one of the finest boxers alive.

“I wanted to try it, actually, because I want to fight Katie Taylor of Ireland,” she said with a smile.

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Petecio actually did not have to explain why.

Taylor, 35, is a two-weight world champion and the reigning undisputed lightweight champion of the world.

“She’s an Olympic Champion, a World champion. She has won several belts already,” Petecio said of Taylor, who has racked up a total of 18 gold medals prior to turning pro, including one from the London Games back in 2012.

“I’m betting that just being to spar with her would be amazing,” she said.

For now, Petecio is setting her sights on preparing for the 2024 Paris Summer Games.

She has, after all, one good reason to do so even if she’s already 32 by then.

“Champ Hadie (Diaz) won silver in Rio (de Janeiro) and then gold here [at Tokyo]. So why would I not try doing that in Paris?”

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“Let’s raise everything to the Lord and just keep on working hard,” she said.

If anything, going pro should also help in Petecio’s growth as a boxer as it could give her access to resources known only to prizefighters.

There are currently 36 men and women with professional experience competing in this ear’s Summer Games, a sharp rise from the three who saw action in Bazil five years ago when the Olympics open its doors to the paid ranks. That list includes Petecio’s teammate, middleweight Eumir Marcial, who now professionally competes under Manny Pacquiao’s promotional company.

But who knows? Paris is still a long way to go. And even Petecio knows that.

“I have no plans as of now. But it depends,” she said.

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TAGS: Nesthy Petecio, PH Tokyo 2020, Tokyo Olympics
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