Nesthy Petecio of the Philippines will shift her focus on the World Qualifying Tournament as she continues to seek a pathway to the Paris Olympiad in 2024.
Petecio’s dream of qualifying to the Summer Games next year via the 19th Asian Games came to an early and abrupt end at the hands of Chinese-Taipei’s Lin Yu Ting, an opponent she had defeated in the Round of 16 on her way to the 54-57 kg women’s boxing final two years ago in Japan.
Lin got her revenge before a partisan crowd, earning a 4-1 nod from the judges against her Olympics tormentor at the Hangzhou Olympic Sports Center Gymnasium.
With the road to Paris via the Asiad now blocked, Petecio turns her sights on the World Qualifying Tournaments early next year, one in Busto Arzizio in Italy from February 29 to March 12, and another in Bangkok, Thailand from May 23 to June 3.
In her corner to lend support is Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines chairman Ricky Vargas, who sent the Filipina boxer a reassuring message right after her fight with the Taiwanese.
“Nesthy naniniwala ako sa iyo. Kung gusto mo, kaya mo. Napatunayan mo na yan. You can rebound when you put your mind to it kung gusto mo bumalik sa Olympics. I am proud of what you have accomplished. This is just a bump and [I’m] confident on what you still can,” the message read.
A grateful Petecio thanked the ABAP official and promised to atone for her loss by coming back stronger.
“Thank you so much, po sir! Sa walang sawang tiwala at suporta po sakin/samin po,” Petecio responded. “Humihingi po ako ng pasensya sa pagkatalo ko po ngayon…babawi po ako sir, babalik po akong mas malakas pa!!”