In the eyes of national boxing team consultant Donald Abnett, it’s still a long way when it comes to the conditioning as well as the fighting form for Tokyo Olympics-bound boxer Eumir Marcial.
The 59-year-old Australian made his comments Tuesday, May 11, as the boxing coaching staff advised Marcial to join the national team in its bubble training camp in Thailand.
“It’s far less from what we’ve expected. It’s a bit of a concern,” said Abnett as he appeared on the online Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum with Filipino coach Ronald Chavez from their training camp in Muaklek, which is a two-hour drive from the capital city Bangkok.
Abnett said Marcial sent him footage of his training and sparring while he was in the United States, and just recently from where he is currently holding training camp at the Valientes Boxing Gym in Zamboanga City.
Last week, the 25-year-old Marcial admitted that he is still trying to lose weight in time for the ASBC Elite Men and Women Boxing Championships on May 21 to June 1 in Dubai.
When he earned a spot to the Tokyo Olympics early last year, Marcial opted to turn professional when he signed a contract with the MP Promotions, which is owned by boxing icon and Senator Manny Pacquiao.
Marcial arrived in the US in October 2020 and trained with Hall of Fame mentor Freddie Roach at the Wild Card Gym in Los Angeles, California. In his first fight as a pro last December 16, he won via a unanimous decision against American Andrew Whitfield at the Microsoft Theater in L.A.
He returned to the country April 20.
Abnett said there is still enough time to get Marcial to his proper conditioning and form, and that could only happen if he is truly committed to join the training camp in Thailand with the national team.
“I strongly encourage him to join,” said Abnett, a former national boxing team mentor of Australia who has been in two Olympics and has been added to the staff as consultant for the Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines (ABAP) in early 2019.
“That’s probably the best place for him. Definitely the best place for him, so he should be with us.”
ABAP secretary-general Ed Picson has said that Marcial already informed the federation that after the Dubai meet he will go to Thailand.