Bado bags gold in Asian U22


AARON JUDE BADO stunned hometown bet and favorite Thanarat Saengphet, 3-2, to snatch the men’s flyweight gold medal at the Asian Boxing Confederation Asian U22 Championships on Thursday at the Huamark Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand.

It was a major upset by the 19-year-old Bado, whose claim to fame so far is a gold medal at the Palarong Pambansa in 2019.

He, too, competed in his first international tournament.

Saengphet? The 20-year-old Thai already owns a world championships bronze medal in Belgrade last year.

“I just kept thinking about my family in the tournament. Up to my last fight, I always thought about them and told myself that my fights here are for them,” said Bado, whose father Norberto is a government employee and a former head coach of their native Iligan City.

“They are my greatest motivations,” added Bado, also referring to his mother Adelyn, who works as a cinema checker also in Iligan City, and younger brother John Michael.

Flint Jara, meanwhile, yielded to Kazakhstan’s Nursultan Altunbek, 5-0, to settle for the men’s bantamweight silver medal.

Featherweight Jericho Acaylar and minimum weight Mark Lester Durens clinched bronze medals for the eight-member Philippine team.

Saengphet was the aggressive boxer in the first round until Bado found his range in the next two to reverse the bout’s outcome.

The Southeast Asian Games, and eventually the Olympics, rank high in Bado’s goals. “Step by step, I want to compete in SEA Games and someday in the Olympics,” he said. “That’s my dream so this win is a big boost to my morale.”

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