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Asiad offers Olympic slots

The 19th Asian Games will be crucial for Filipino boxers who are looking to qualify in the Paris Olympics in 2024.

Philippine Olympic Committee president Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino yesterday said the International Olympic Committee will be the one to pick the Olympic qualifiers based on their performances in the Asian Games set in Hangzhou, China in September next year.

In a memo sent to International Boxing Association president Umar Kremlev of Russia that was circulated to various national Olympic committees on Thursday, the IOC stressed that the five continental tourneys will serve as one of the three qualifiers for the Summer Games.

Aside from the Asian Games, other Olympic qualifiers will be the Pan American Games in Santiago, Chile; European Games in Krakow, Poland; Pacific Games in Honiara, Solomon Islands; and the All-Africa Games in Accra, Ghana.

Tolentino said they are still inquiring to the IOC how many boxers will qualify in the Paris Olympics through the Asian Games and what are the two other qualifiers for the Summer Games.

“The IOC has designated five continental games as one of the three qualifiers for Paris 2024,” Tolentino said on Friday.

“After those continental championships, the IOC has also set two more world qualifiers in 2024.”

Hopes are high for Filipino boxers in the Paris Olympics.

In fact, Filipino boxers are now regarded as the best in the world after Nesthy Petecio and Carlo Paalam clinched silver medals while Eumir Marcial settled for bronze medal in the Tokyo Olympics last year.

All in all, boxing has contributed a total of four silvers and four bronzes out of the Philippines’ 1-5-8 gold-silver-bronze haul in 22 appearances in the Summer Games.

The IOC will supervise the qualifiers and competitions for Paris 2024, while stressing in the same memo that boxing remains out of the Los Angeles 2028 Games program pending the resolution of the leadership and credibility crisis at the IBA.

“With three qualifiers, we have high hopes that we could send more boxers to Paris,” Tolentino said.

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