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Marcial vows ‘great show’ in Manila

EUMIR Marcial vows to put on a show when he faces Thoedsak Sinam at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium on 23 March. | PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF EUMIR Marcial/FB

Eumir Marcial, the only Filipino boxer so far who has qualified for the 2024 Paris Olympics, is raring to showcase his wares on home soil.

“I am looking forward to this homecoming fight because the last time I fought in the country was during the 2019 SEA Games,” Marcial said from his Las Vegas training camp.

That appearance in the country takes place on 23 March at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium with Thai power puncher Thoedsak Sinam opposing him and putting the Filipino southpaw’s buildup in peril.

“I intend to put on a great show for those who will watch and see me live. I believe that I will be more than ready by the time I get to Paris.”

The Olympics take the spotlight from 26 July to 11 August with Marcial attempting to improve on his bronze medal finish in Tokyo.

While revving up for his fifth pro fight, Marcial reported for training at the DLX Gym in Las Vegas with former US Olympic team coach Kay Koroma handling his training.

He is expected to return to the Philippines in the second week of March.

“I will be leaving the US on the 11th of March and will be setting up camp in Tagaytay courtesy of Mayor (and Philippine Olympic Committee president) Bambol Tolentino who is very supportive of Filipino athletes, especially those who are going to the Paris Olympics,” said the Zamboanga-born southpaw.

Marcial admits he will have to walk the tightrope when he starts his Olympic quest since the division’s big guns have already qualified.

“The competition there will be very tough since the Cuban super champion Arlen Lopez is there as well as the Chinese who beat me in Hangzhou. The Ukrainian who beat me in the semis of the Tokyo Olympics — Oleksandr Khyzhniak — will be there too so it’s a star-studded cast.”

Assisting Marcial in his American training camp are former Philippine team standout Mario Fernandez and Marcial’s wife Princess.

Fernandez was brought to the States by the Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines.

“Even though I will be fighting as a pro for the fifth time, we all share the same vision and that is to medal in Paris,” added Marcial, who packs a 4-0 win-loss record with two knockouts.

Sinam enters the Marcial clash carrying a 23-13 card with 19 knockouts.

The Manny Pacquiao-owned MP Promotions headed by Sean Gibbons is staging the event with solid backup from the POC and the Philippine Sports Commission.

“It’ going to be a night of fistic fireworks. Eumir’s got those heavy, heavy hands. I have seen him dropping a lot of guys while sparring,” Gibbons said.

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