Mark Anthony Barriga has to go at it alone.
The International Boxing Association (AIBA) Tuesday informed the Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines that its request for lightweight boxer Charly Suarez to be accorded an invitation to the London Olympics has been denied.
In an email to ABAP president Ricky Vargas, AIBA executive director Ho Kim said, “after numerous discussions with IOC, the quota in the weight category which you requested was returned to AIBA since IOC could not find a suitable place in the Tripartite Selection. Therefore, following the Olympic Qualifying Guidelines approved by the IOC Executive Board, the next Best Boxer from the 2011 AIBA World Boxing Championships is supposed to be selected.”
“Following the Competition Protocol list, we regrettably found out that your boxer does not meet the qualification to be the next Best Boxer in your continent. We would like to truly express our regret to inform you on such matter”, Kim added
The ABAP had earlier written a formal request to AIBA president Ching Kuo-Wu to consider Suarez based on his performance as a finalist in the Asian Qualifying Tournament in Astana, Kazakhstan (he lost an unpopular decision to China’s Qiang Liu). He also turned in spectacular results as a boxer for the Mumbai Fighters of India in the AIBA-organized World Series of Boxing (WSB).
Filipino boxing legend Manny Pacquiao chimed in his support for the request in a personal letter to Wu as did Philippine Olympic Committee president Jose Cojuangco Jr.
This leaves Mark Anthony Barriga as the lone Filipino bet in the boxing competitions, Barriga fights in the Light Flyweight category (49 Kg.), the same weight class which won an Olympic silver (Mansueto Velasco Jr, Atlanta ’96) and bronze (Roel Velasco, Barcelona, ’92) for the Philippines.
Bronze medalist Velasco will act as Barriga’s coach in London.
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