Malaysia pulls out of boxing tiff
SUBIC, Philippines – Citing the "current situation" in the south which "may not be safe and may jeopardize the safety of the athlete," the Malaysia Amateur Boxing Federation has withdrawn from the 2013 ASBC Asian Confederation Youth Boxing Championships which gets under way today at the Subic gym in Zambales.
The "eleventh hour cancellation" was relayed via email Friday by Major Wan Abdul Hamid, vice president of the Malaysia Amateur Boxing Federation, to Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines executive director Ed Picson.
"Due to the armed conflict in Sabah, our National Sports Council has directed MABF to cancel our trip to Subic," the Malaysian boxing official said of the tournament.
Malaysia's pullout reduced the field down to 25, possibly 24, as Pakistan is also reportedly mulling to skip the meet.
"Pakistan also has not sent flight details and other requirements, although they confirmed and sent a list of team members," said Picson. "I suspect they are also withdrawing."
Hamid expressed "sincere apologies for this unpleasant news" and confirmed his presence in the Commission Meeting Sunday.
"We are equally disappointed that we in sport should be affected by political conflict. That said, we completely understand," said Picson. "We are happy however, that you will still attend the Commission meetings. Looking forward to seeing you, my friend."
The Philippines is bannered by James Palicte (60 kgs), Jade Bornea (49 kgs.), Ian Clark Bautista (52 kgs), Jonas Bacho (56 kgs), and Eumir Felix Marcial (64 kgs).