By Nick Giongco
Only lightweight Charly Suarez, middleweight Eumir Marcial and Fil-British light-heavyweight John Marvin are assured of slots on the team that will compete in the boxing competitions of the 30th Southeast Asian Games in December.
There will be eight divisions in the men’s class and those competing for slots include Carlo Paalam in the light-fly, Rogen Ladon in the fly, bantam Mario Fernandez and a few others.
Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines (Abap) secretary general Ed Picson said the complete list will be finalized right after a dual meet between the Filipinos and members of the Australian national team.
The Australians have been training in the country the past few weeks and Picson said results of these box-offs will determine the composition of the squad that is vying to win the most number of gold medals.
Suarez’s is a special case.
The 31-year-old Suarez, a Rio Olympics veteran, 2014 Incheon Asian Games silver medalist and two-time SEAG champion, has already fought four times in the professional ranks, winning them all.
To guarantee that he avoids complications, Suarez was given clearance by the Games and Amusements Board to participate.
Last month, Suarez won his fourth bout in Hanoi, Vietnam.
“(Only the) Gold,” said Suarez, a native of Davao del Norte, when asked if he will settle for second place.
Marcial is fresh from taking runnerup honors in the 2019 world championships and is the prohibitive favorite to rule his weight class in the SEAG.
Holding the rank of Lance Corporal in the British Army and assigned to the Royal Regiment of Wales, Marvin is likewise the top pick in his weight category as he is also the defending champion.