Nesthy Petecio, Aira Villegas qualify for Paris Olympics boxing

Nesthy Petecio, Aira Villegas qualify for Paris Olympics boxing

By: - Reporter / @junavINQ
/ 09:44 AM March 12, 2024

Nesthy Petecio boxing Olympics

Nesthy Petecio is headed to the Paris Olympics boxing competition. –OLYMPICS PHOTO

Nesthy Petecio strongly feels that a silver medal in the previous 2020 Tokyo Olympics is not enough.

She earned the opportunity to upgrade that medal after claiming a spot in this year’s 2024 Paris Olympics.

With superior mastery in the ring, Petecio pounded Turkiye’s Esra Yildiz Kahraman with excruciating blows to the body to advance to the women’s 57kg finals at the 1st World Qualification Tournament in Busto Arsizio, Italy and seize a golden ticket to the glamorous French capital in July.

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“I am so blessed. This is very important for me because maybe this is my last Olympics,’’ Petecio told olympics.com after earning the distinction of becoming the first female boxer to clinch two consecutive Olympic berths.

Joining Petecio in Paris is compatriot Aira Villegas, who likewise secured an Olympic quota with a unanimous decision victory over Bulgaria’s Zlatislava Chukanova in the women’s 50kg.

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Nesthy Petecio and Aira Villegas boxing Paris Olympics

Nesthy Petecio and Aira Villegas (middle) with boxing national team coaches during the Paris Olympics qualifiers. –MARCUS MANALO FACEBOOK

Petecio and Villegas will be in the company of fellow boxer and Tokyo Olympic bronze medalist Eumir Marcial in Paris along with pole vaulter EJ Obiena and gymnasts Carlo Yulo and Aleah Finnegan.

Villegas negated a point deduction in the second round and knockdown in the third with her hand speed and multiple body shots throughout in getting the nod of the judges.

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“I got this ticket for so many people, especially my family, to God, and for our former President who died (past Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines president Ed Picson), and for my partner in life,’’ said Petecio.

“Before (the tournament), I promised her that I would win the ticket to Paris and finally this is it. I’m so happy,’’ added the former world champion from Sta. Cruz, Davao del Sur.

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The 31-year-old put herself in a position to bag the Olympic gold back in Tokyo but lost by unanimous decision to fierce amateur rival Sena Irie of host Japan in the final.

“I will not stop until I get the Olympic gold medal,’’ said Petecio.

TAGS: Aira Villegas, Nesthy Petecio, Paris Olympics

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