Day 8, morning session: PETECIO advances to the gold-medal match. Testa claims historical bronze for Italy

TOKYO, JAPAN – JULY 31: Nesthy Petecio of Team Philippines celebrates after winning the bronze medal over Irma Testa of Team Italy during the Women’s Feather (54-57kg) semi final on day eight of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Kokugikan Arena on July 31, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Ueslei Marcelino – Pool/Getty Images)

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Boxing Tournament’s Day 8 continues at the Kokugikan Arena, with four weight classes going on the ring during the morning session: the Men’s Fly (48-52kg), Men’s Light (57-63kg), Women’s Middle and Women’s Feather (54-57kg).

The first semifinal of the tournament took place this morning, in the Women’s Feather (54-57kg) category. After a tight match, the Pilipino boxer Nesthy PETECIO earned a 4:1 victory over the 2019 European champion Irma TESTA of Italy. PETECIO – in tears as her name was announced as the winner – can now advance to the gold-medal match scheduled for Tuesday 3 August.

“This means so much to me as not only it is my dream, it is my father’s dream. It’s not for me, it’s for my family, my country and for all the people from the Philippines who have prayed for me. I love you; I love you.” The boxer from the Philippines said, commenting on today’s win.

“The coaches gave me a plan and if the first plan did not work then we could change it. She was taller and tried to use that advantage, but I didn’t mind. Inside the ring, we are just the same. I got better and better as the fight went on as I have that spirit.”

On the other side, TESTA collected the first, historical, Olympic medal (bronze) ever won by an Italian female boxer.

“I’m so grateful and happy to be here, to win a medal, and I’m happy to fight with this opponent. She’s a world champion, a big champion, and I’m happy to fight with her,” she said.

The morning session saw Colombia’s Yuberjen Herney MARTINEZ RIVAS fiercely overcoming India’s front runner and #1 seeded AMIT via a 4:1 on points win in the Men’s Fly (48 – 52kg) division. Advancing in the brackets, he will meet the home champion TANAKA Ryomei of Japan who triumphed over the People’s Republic of China’s HU Jianguan.

In the same weight category, the Rio 2016 gold medalist Shakhobidin ZOIROV (UZB) claimed his second 5:0 unanimous verdict in this Olympic tournament, at the expenses of Daniel David VARELA de PINA of Cape Verde.

23-year-old Carlo PAALAM, from the Philippines, put in place an incredible performance over seed #4 Mohamed FLISSI (ALG) and is now a step closer to the Olympic medal. The next opponent on his path will be Uzbekistan’s ZOIROV who will face in the quarterfinal on Tuesday 3 August.

In bout #194, United States of America’s Keyshawn DAVIS dominated his preliminary round of 16 of Men’s Light (57-63kg), outstanding his opponent from France Sofiane OUMIHA as the referee stopped the contest in round 2. Next up for him is Gabil MAMEDOV of the Russian Olympique Committee, who prevailed over Louis Richarno COLIN (MRI).

In the same weight category, Armenian boxer and 2019 European Games champion Hovhannes BACHKOV claimed a 4:1 win over Javid CHALABIYEV (AZE), advancing to the next phase of the tournament where he will square off against Elnur ABDURAIMOV (UZB). The boxer from Uzbekistan and #4 seeded showcased excellent boxing skills to win his bout against Bakhodur USMONOV (TJK), today.

Later in the session, the Kokugikan Arena saw two Women’s Middle (69-75kg) quarterfinal bouts. Top seed Lauren PRICE from Sheffield (GBR) came up with another success owing to a 5:0 victory over Atheyna BYLON of Panama.

Speaking after the win that assures her an Olympic medal, PRICE said:

“It has not really sunk in yet, but this has been my dream since I was an eight-year-old. Just to be an Olympian, let alone (win a) medal.”

“I cannot really put it into words what it means to me yet. I was a bit emotional in the ring as soon as it finished as I knew the decision as we get the scores as we go along.”

“It was kind of hard to hold it in, but it’s been emotional this week as well seeing the whole team medaling. You have kind of got to hold a bit back to concentrate on yourself, but we have got a great team and there are many more medals to come.”

“It just goes to show GB Boxing put the work in, even though the pandemic, and it just goes to show how much they sacrificed and pushed for us. t has just all paid off and we are definitely one of the fittest teams here.”

The British boxer, a 2019 World Champion, will now have to face Nouchka FONTIJN of The Netherlands (on August 6) for a spot into the semifinal.

Boxing will continue in the afternoon session with ten additional bouts to be contested in the Men’s Fly (48-52kg), Men’s Light (57-63kg), Women’s Middle and Women’s Feather (54-57kg) weight classes.

Event schedule and results

Find the event schedule and the results here.  

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