There will be three professional fights being readied for Eumir Felix Marcial, one of four national athletes, who can earn the country’s first Olympic gold medal in Tokyo next year.
His promoter Sean Gibbons said that all these three bouts against not-so-prominent fighters will allow him to stay prepared for the Tokyo Olympics.
“We’re trying to keep in line with what he’s going to do in Tokyo. So, everything is geared towards his preparation for that,” said Gibbons from Los Angeles.
Gibbons and Marcial were the two guests of the online edition of the Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum via Zoom conference on Tuesday.
According to Gibbons, the three fights will be lined up in the months leading up to Marcial’s stint in the Tokyo Olympics next year.
The first fight could take place in October, which will be around three or four rounds. The next is being scheduled in January, with the last of the three taking place in April.
“We hope to have three fights and we have nine months for that. That’s almost a year before the Olympics,” added Gibbons, who recently convinced the 24-year-old Marcial to ink a deal with eight-division boxing champion Manny Pacquiao’s promotional outfit MP promotions.
Marcial, who is in training while in home quarantine in Imus, Cavite, signed up a promotional agreement with MP Promotions for the next six years.
Marcial said he wants to train under his Olympic coaching team, composed of Ronald Chavez and Australian mentor, Don Abnett, who is the coaching consultant of the Association of Boxing Alliances of the Philippines.
“Gusto ko po silang makasama. Hopefully, makapag-simula na ako ng aking training,” said Marcial, who joins current world champions Pedro Taduran, Johnriel Casimero and Jerwin Ancajas under the Pacquiao stable and with Gibbons’ guidance.
Marcial said that with Chavez and Abnett, he will be able to maintain the fighting style that he has been relying on for many months since qualifying for the Olympics.
ABAP executive director Ed Picson said he has not been informed of Marcial’s desire to get the services of his Philippine team coaches for his pro bouts, but immediately informed Philippine Sports Commissioner Fernandez about it.
“Fernandez told me that we (PSC and ABAP) will sit down to discuss the possibilities regarding this situation,” said Picson.
Marcial has been provided with equipment by the ABAP.
The Philippine Sports Commission and ABAP are helping Marcial form a team of experts to help him prepare for the Tokyo Olympics.
The agency is also set to let him use to the boxing gym at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex and make it available to him for workouts.
Marcial, fellow boxer Irish Magno, pole vaulter Ernest John Obiena and gymnast Carlos Yulo are so far the only Filipino athletes who have qualified for the Olympics.