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No Paris for Pacquiao

Manny Pacquiao won’t be suiting up for the Philippines in the 2024 Paris Olympics. | PATRICK T. FALLON/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

The International Olympic Committee has ruled that Manny Pacquiao won’t be allowed to compete in the 2024 Paris Olympics since he is overaged.

The IOC, in response to a letter from the Philippine Olympic Committee late last year appealing for the former senator’s stint in Paris, stressed on the 40-year-old age limit for athletes participating in the Olympics.

Pacquiao turned 45 last December.

Still, had Pacquiao met the age regulation, his possible qualification for the Olympics is to go through qualifiers, one of them last year’s Asian Games where Eumir Felix Marcial secured a lot after placing second in the light-heavyweight class.

“Too bad our beloved boxing icon is disqualified because of his age and that everyone needs to go through qualifiers, in all sports, to be able to participate in Paris,” POC president Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino said on Tuesday.

James McLeod, IOC director for National Olympic Committee Relations, wrote the POC on its request for Pacquiao to be able to box in Paris.

“The only valid boxing qualification system for Paris 2024 is the one approved by the IOC Executive Board in September 2022 published and distributed to NOCs and boxing national federations on 6 December 2022,” McLeod said in his letter.

World No. 2 pole vaulter Ernest John “EJ” Obiena, artistic gymnasts Carlos Yulo and Aleah Finnegan and Marcial have so far made the Paris grade.

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