A strong start wasn’t enough for Eumir Marcial to secure the gold in the 19th Asian Games.
The 27-year-old Marcial lost 5-0 to Tanglatihan Tuohetaerbieke of host China in a bout that saw both fighters receive standing eight counts on Thursday night’s final at the Hangzhou gymnasium.
The match was tied going into the third and final round, which the five judges eventually awarded to the Chinese bet for the gold.
Marcial, who secured a berth in the Paris Olympics by advancing to the 80 kg finals, settled for silver but regretted not winning a fight he believed was in his favor.
“Nakakahinayang kasi nakuha ko yung first round,” said Marcial, who won the opening round after tagging the Chinese with a straight right for a standing eight count. “Akala ko yung last round sa akin, e. Yun ang ramdam ko.”
Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) President Bambol Tolentino shared the same sentiment.
“Wala tayo laban sa host. Atin yung first and third rounds, malinaw,” he said.
Tuohetaerbieke, a silver medalist in the World Championship earlier this year, rallied back and scored on a combination that forced the referee to give Marcial a standing eight count that took the Filipino by surprise.
The final round featured back-and-forth action with neither fighter backing down.
Both Marcial and the Chinese raised their hands when the bout was over.
“Pero siyempre kailangan kong i-respeto yung decision ng mga judges. Yun ang desisyon nila. Pero congratulations pa rin sa China,” said the Tokyo Olympics bronze medalist.
The silver was still an upgrade from the bronze medal Marcial won in the 2018 Asiad in Palembang, Indonesia, as a middleweight. Marcial also ended up as the lone medal winner among the nine-man boxing team.