Tokyo Olympics bronze medalist Eumir Marcial rocked his opponent from Thailand while Rogen Ladon survived a tough battle as both Filipinos entered the finals of their respective divisions in the 31st Southeast Asian Games boxing competitions on Thursday at the Bac Ninh Stadium.
Marcial, 26, gave 21-year-old Peerapat Yeasungnoen of Thailand a beating of a lifetime and scored a second-round RSC (referee stopped contest) win in their men’s middleweight semifinals bout.
The now professional boxer Marcial fights Timor Leste’s Delio Anzaqeci Mouzinho in the gold medal bout on Sunday.
Ladon, of Bago City in Negros Occidental, barely beat Thanarat Saengphet of Thailand through a split decision to move to the finals in the men’s flyweight category.
The three-time SEA Games champion Marcial delivered heavy combinations to the body and head of Yeasungnoen, urging the referee to stop the fight at the 1:54 mark of the second round.
“I engaged him because I knew I can take his punches so I focused on counterpunching,” said Marcial, who added that he didn’t spar during their training camp in Thailand to avoid being scouted by the SEA Games boxers.
However, fellow Team Pilipinas stablemates James Palicte, Josie Gabuco, and Riza Pasuit could not join them in the final.
Reigning light weltereight champion Palicte was dethroned by Indonesia’s Farrand Papendang, 4-1, to drop to the bronze medal match.
Gabuco, winner of the light flyweight tournament in Clark, suffered a 3-2 loss to Thailand’s Chuthamat Raksat while Pasuit, a finalist in the lightweight division back in 2019, fell to Vietnam’s Vuong Thi V via a 5-0 shutout.