Bacho stands alone as PHL boxers fall in Thailand

By JP Abcede

THANYABURI, THAILAND--Welterweight Joel Bacho found himself the last member standing of the Philippine contingent that was competing at the Thailand International Boxing Tournament after five of his mates lost in the quarterfinals.

Bacho demolished Taipei’s Huang Zhao Ching, 5-0, after beating Cuban Arisnoidys Despaigne in the first round Tuesday. The 24-year-old local from Mandaluyong will face 2016 World Youth gold medalist Akhmedov Sadriddin in the semifinals.

“I know he (Sadriddin) is good, but I gained a lot of confidence with that win over [Despaigne]. Hopefully, it will carry me to the finals [for] a possible gold here,” declared Bacho.

Those who succumbed to their second round opponents were Carlo Paalam, who lost to Rio Olympics gold medalist and 2016 AIBA Boxer of the Year Dusmatov Hasanboy of Uzbekistan, 0-5, in the light flyweight division; as well as 2015 SEA Games gold medalists flyweight Ian Clark Bautista and bantamweight Mario Fernandez, who were both defeated by Thai fighters.

James Palicte could not sustain the momentum from his smashing second round TKO victory over Aussie Patrick McLaughlin, as he was stopped by Uzbek Rio Olympic bronze medalist Akhmadaliev Murodjon in their lightweight division bout. Eumir Felix Marcial, meanwhile, was upended by Osley Iglesias Estrada of Cuba, 2-3.