PH boxing team pulls out of Asian U22 tilt, eyes Bulgaria meet

MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine boxing team has withdrawn its participation in the Asian Under-22 Championships in Tashkent, Uzbekistan due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eight Filipinos in Jere Samuel dela Cruz, Maricel dela Torre, Mark Lester Durens, Ernie Garcia, Junmilardo Ogayre, John Paul Panuayan, Marjon Pianar and Mary Sinadjan were supposed to compete in the event slated from January 20 to 30.

“We decided that with the current surge around the world, it was not worth risking the safety of our team,” Ed Picson, Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines (Abap) president, told on Wednesday.

“There will be other tournaments. We will just wait until we feel it will be safer.”

Abap is now eyeing the possibility of joining a tournament in February in Strandja, Bulgaria where a training camp will also be held in preparation for the Hanoi Southeast Asian Games in May.

“If things ease up, there’s another tournament in February-the Strandja in Bulgaria. We’re looking at that. Plus, there’s a training camp there too, so it will serve a double purpose,” Picson said.