GAB said boxing promotions flourished in last quarter of 2021 despite the pandemic
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Games and Amusements Board (GAB) noted the very active professional combat sports scene in the country during the last quarter of 2021 despite the current health crisis grappling the country.
In total, GAB granted permits to 19 boxing promotions from October to December of which nine were held in Cebu, seven in Luzon, two in Davao, and one in Bohol.
This is according to a statement released by GAB Chairman Abraham “Baham” Mitra on Wednesday.
GAB also issued professional licenses to several combat sports athletes to provide them livelihood amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Faced with the challenges posed by the new Covid-19 variants in the country, Philippine professional boxing, and mixed martial arts events – ignited by the enthusiasm of distinguished promoters, under the close guidance and supervision of the Games and Amusements Board (GAB), continued to keep going during the final quarter of 2021,” said in the statement.
GAB also reiterated that all of the promotions they approved were strictly held in accordance with the health and safety guidelines imposed by the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF), DOH, and GAB.
The most notable fight cards in Cebu held in the last quarter of 2021 were “Engkwentro Dos” and “Engkwentro Tres” of boxing startup ARQ Sports.
These two fight cards produced two regional champions in Oriental Pacific Boxing Federation (OPBF) silver flyweight champion April Jay Abne and OPBF youth flyweight champion Johnpaul Gabunilas who are both from ARQ Boxing Stable.
Abne beat Ben Ligas via split decision to snatch the OPBF silver flyweight title on October 30 in Talisay City, Cebu.
Gabunilas scored a fourth-round knockout versus Jonathan Almacen to wrest the OPBF youth flyweight title at the newly-constructed ARQ Boxing Gym in Talamban, Cebu City, just days after Typhoon Odette ravaged the Visayas and Mindanao.
Also, in Bohol, Regie Suganob of PMI Boxing Stable won the vacant International Boxing Federation (IBF) youth light flyweight title against Jerome Baloro via unanimous decision on December 12 in Dauis, Bohol. /rcg
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