Light-welterweight James Palicte made a rousing debut while veteran featherweight Mario Fernandez took an early exit late Wednesday in the ASBC Elite Championships in Amman, Jordan.
The 29 year-old veteran Fernandez lost a close 3-2 decision to the host country’s Yousef Iashash in their 57-kilogram tussle on Day 2 of the competition.
The Bukidnon native engaged the hometown bet in heated exchanges and often landed telling blows but it wasn’t enough to convince all the judges.
In the end, the judges from Morocco, Italy and Kyrgyzstan favored the Jordanian while those from Bulgaria and India saw the fight in favor of Fernandez.
Palicte, born and raised in the boxing hotbed of Bago City in Negros, started flat but woke up in time to beat Iraqi Jaafar Abdulreal Sudani, 4-1, in their 63.5 kg showdown.
There are 13 (seven men and six women) Filipino boxers entered in the slugfest, including Tokyo Olympians Nesthy Petecio, Carlo Paalam and Irish Magno.
Joining the Philippine team are head coach Don Abnett of Australia and local coaches Roel Velasco and Gerson Nietes.
The women’s coaches are Reynaldo Galido and Mitchel Martinez. Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines secretary-general Marcus Manalo is team manager.