Friday afternoon saw ten women boxers crowned champions of the Americas as the penultimate day of the AMBC American Confederation Boxing Championships saw some memorable action in Tegucigalpa. With the men’s Semi-Finals also taking place to determine Saturday’s final session line-up, it was the women who took centre stage on Day Six of the competition, the biggest of its kind ever to be held in Honduras.
Kim Clavel faced Venezuela’s Irismar Del Valle Cardozo at Light Flyweight (48kg) in the first of ten finals, delivering a career-best performance and her first Continental gold. The Canadian’s feat was later matched by teammate Tamara Thibeault, the 20-year-old talent in the side for Ariane Fortin living up to her potential with a brilliant run to secure the Middleweight (75kg) title.
Canada’s Toronto 2015 Pan-American Games winner Caroline Veyre had eliminated the experienced American Mikaela Mayer in their Lightweight (60kg) Semi-Final, but it was the Brazilian Beatriz Ferreira who rose to the occasion and marked her incredible ascent through the ranks to earn the gold. Virginia Fuchs secured the USA’s first gold of the tournament at Flyweight (51kg), before fellow American Danielle Perkins powered through to the Super Heavyweight (+81kg) title.
It was to be the impressive Argentina team who would top the medal table, however, their three gold medals coming thanks to superb campaigns from Leonela Sanchez (54kg), Dayana Sanchez (64kg) and Lucia Perez (69kg). The Colombian women’s team development was given a further boost as Marcela Arias (57kg) and Jessica Caicedo (81kg) ensured the country’s double-gold haul.
In the men’s competition, Cuba’s Johanys Argilagos and Colombia’s Yuberjen Martinez both won their Light Flyweight (49kg) Semi-Finals and the two incredible talents will now meet once again to reignite a gripping rivalry that began back in Rio 2016 and has run right through Season VII of the World Series of Boxing Season, Martinez having the better of his opponent by the tightest of margins on each occasion.
Another Cuban, Bantamweight (56kg) Javier Ibanez, defeated American 19-year-old Duke Ragan in one of the day’s top bouts to set up a Final against Dominican Leonel dos Santos. Ibanez’s WSB teammate Erislandy Savon progressed to the Heavyweight (91kg) final where he meets Argentina’s experience Yamil Alberto Peralta. Arlen Lopez narrowly avoided defeat to Guatemala’s talented Lester Martinez at Middleweight (75kg), and Roniel Iglesias faces USA’s Quinton Randall in the Welterweight (69kg) final after both won through testing semis.