By Joseph Almer Pedrajas
Filipino Rogen Ladon advanced to the semifinals of the men’s 52-kg division by narrowly beating Indonesian Aldoms Suguro Thursday in the boxing competition of the 30th Southeast Asian Games at the PICC Forum.
Though it was a 4-1 decision, the closeness of the fight was reflected in the scores – 29-28, 30-27, 29-28, 29-28, 28-29.
The Negros Occidental native kept his patience in the first two rounds, stalking his prey and studying his moves before pouring on the heat.
“Matibay ‘yung kalaban eh. Pinag-aralan muna namin,” said the 26-year-old Ladon. “Hometown natin ‘to. Pakita natin ‘yung galing natin.”
James Palicte, Ian Clark Bautista and Eumir Felix Marcial, meanwhile, advanced to the semis of their divisions after drawing byes.
Last Wednesday, four Philippine bets scored smashing victories and moved on to the semis.
Former world champion Josie Gabuco, Aira Villegas, Irish Magno, and Carlo Paalam won their respective quarterfinal matches at the start of the boxing competitions.
Paalam, Villegas and Magno won their bouts via shutouts, with only the 32-year-old Gabuco, winner in the 2012 AIBA World Championship, receiving stiff resistance from Thai opponent Raksat Chuthamat in the women’s light-flyweight division.