The Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines opened the First Regional Training Center here in Cagayan de Oro Training Center last week.

Top officials of ABAP headed by President Ricky Vargas and Secretary General Patrick Gregorio, together with Executive Director Ed Picson were in town for the opening ceremonies with Governor Oscar S. Moreno.

The Training center is the first in the country after the boxing association opened one at the Rizal memorial Complex in Manila.

“We are encouraged by the performance of our boxers in the recent Asian Games in China were we won several models including 1 Gold,” Vargas said.

“Our plan was just to expose our boxers in an international competition and we did not expect them to win any medals but in the end they come home with honors,” he added.

The training center has presently 50 trainees with 5 of them women.

According to Governor Moreno the role of the local level is to recruit and train in the grass roots while the responsibility of the national organization is to expose them in international tournaments.

Picson added that when the trainees are ready they will face the trainees in Manila and then the national trainees in Baguio to test their skills.

“If we find their performance good then we will include them in the national pool and expose them to national and international tournaments,” he said.

The ABAP is presently preparing for two qualifying tournaments before the next Olympics.

“We are now looking at the younger guys and the new faces with their good showing in the Asian games,” Vargas said.

Boxing has been considered by most sports analysts as the only hope for our first Olympic Gold Medal which has remained elusive over the years.

PHOTO: Top Officials of ABAP face members of media to announce their training plans for boxers for the next Olympics. From left, ABAP Executive Director Ed Picson, MisOr Governor Oscar S. Moreno, ABAP President Ricky Vargas and ABAP Secretary General Patrick Gregorio. ABAP opened their first Training Center in Cagayan de Oro under the auspices of the Province of Misamis Oriental.

article from the Mindanao Current

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