Eumir’s dream: Olympic gold PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 10 August 2011 17:27

Eumir Felix Marcial, the 15-year-old Zamboangueño boxer who made history as the first Filipino to win gold medal in the prestigious Amateur International Boxing Association (AIBA) in Kazakhstan recently, dreams of grabbing an Olympic gold in the future.

Marcial credits the “Golpe Golpe na Barangay”, the popular boxing program of District 2 Congressman Erbie A. Fabian, for having served as his training ground where he fought countless fights since he was eight years old.

In a testimonial dinner-press conference hosted by Rep. Fabian at the Lotus Restaurant of Grand Astoria Hotel last Monday night, Marcial said it was in “Golpe Golpe na Barangay where he honed his boxing skill and got proper training from trainers like Arsenio “Rawhide”, Ambrosio “Gaga” Maquilan and Rodolfo “Popie” Cartin.
“Ya aprende yo disiplina y ya dale con migo oportunidad ase sale y ase agudo mio talento na ‘Golpe Golpe na Barangay’ (It is in Golpe Golpe na Barangay where I learned discipline and where I had the opportunity to hone my talent),” said the shy and soft-spoken lad from Lunzuran.

“I wish Congressman Fabian will continue on with Golpe Golpe na Barangay so that other young aspiring boxers in Zamboanga City will have a chance to become champions too like me,” Marcial added.

Nuevo recounted the early days of Marcial in Golpe Golpe na Barangay where he won almost all bouts in eight years.
“I remember one day after the weighing-in preparatory to the fights in Golpe Golpe na Barangay when I saw Eumir sobbing in a corner. When I asked him why he was crying, he complained that they did not bring food for him to eat after the weighing in,” recalled Nuevo, president of the Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines, Zamboanga City Chapter.

He explained that boxers usually don’t eat breakfast before weighing-in so that they will maintain their required weight in a bout category.
“It is after the weighing in that they would take their meal,” Nuevo said.

For his part, Fabian, a sports buff, said it has been his dream and desire to revive the old glorious days when Zamboanga City was known for its fine boxers.
“We have started the ‘Golpe Golpe na Barangay’ 19 years ago with the primary goal of training local boxers in their early age so that when they grow up, they will become world class fighters. Now we are starting to reap the fruit of our labor. We have already produced champion fighters like Eumir, Anthony (Marcial), (Harry) Tañamor and (Marvin) Mabait,” Fabian said.

Fabian paid tribute to Marcial’s determination and discipline even as he vowed to continue supporting sports development in Zamboanga.
The 2nd district solon said sports development has always been a priority agenda of his since early on in his public service career.

Marcial, Fabian added is proof, Zamboanguenos are capable of achieving greatness in whatever fields they endeavour in.
Furthermore he said , Marcial will serve as inspiration for others here in the city to rise above themselves and make their dreams come true.

Fabian conceived the “Golpe Golpe na Barangay” in 1992 when he was still a councilor. It is spearheaded by Nuevo and is now on its 19th year of existence bringing amateur boxing bouts to the different barangays of the city.

Marcial, when prodded what his ultimate dream was boldly declared he wants win gold medal in the Olympics someday and bring pride and glory to the country, Zamboanga City and Barangay Lunzuran where he hails from.

The young champion, who is a third year high school ABAP scholar at Bagiuo National High School narrated his exploits in Kazakhstan, with his proud parents beaming with pride and joy sitting beside him and the congressman at the presidential table.

Marcial, came home to a hero’s welcome last Monday, after a sensational victory over Turkish opponent Cengiz Onat in the gold medal bout last July 30 in Kazakhstan to become the first Filipino boxer to ever win in the prestigious amateur boxing competition. He was feted to a motorcade shortly after arriving from Manila last Monday afternoon. Then he was brought to City Hall by a team from Cong. Fabian’s office headed by Sports coordinator Bong Casimiro where he was granted audience by Mayor Celso Lobregat.

Lobregat lauded young Marcial’s achievements and exhorted the gold medal winner to continue on his training and studies.
The mayor also promised the young Marcial a token reward in  behalf of a grateful and proud city for his feats. — RR and EB