US teenager Antonio Vargas excels on Day 2 of the Toronto 2015 Pan American Games

July 20th, 2015 / All

Twelve captivating bouts were held on the second boxing competition day of the Toronto 2015 Pan American Games, where boxers from the men’s Flyweight (52 kg), Lightweight (60 kg), Welterweight (69 kg), Light Heavyweight (81 kg) and Super Heavyweight (91+ kg weight classes were in action.

The winners of the Super Heavyweight matches advanced through to the semi-finals in Toronto, and have achieved guaranteed medals in the Games.

Bout of the day

Klitschko Brothers Youth Tournament winner Antonio Vargas is only 19-year-old, but defeated all of his strong rivals at the Pan American Games Qualifier in Tijuana last month.

The US teenager had to meet Dominican Republic’s Leonel De Los Santos in the opening Flyweight preliminary, and the two talented boxers produced the best bout of the day.

De Los Santos was quicker in the opening round, while Vargas began to close down the height difference as the first frame progressed.

Vargas moved ahead and tried to further reduce the fighting distance in the second round by using his strength and skill, while his Dominican opponent expertly moved around the ring to avoid damaging shots.

The final result of the bout depended solely on the performance of each man in the third round, and it was Vargas who was more dynamic as his powerful hooks reached the target often and accurately.

After his close and entertaining victory, Vargas will now fight Puerto Rico’s London 2012 Olympian and World Series of Boxing (WSB) success story Jeyvier Jesus Cintron in the quarter-finals.

Team of the day

Mexico won two contests on the second competition day in Toronto, where their WSB boxers performed well.

Lindolfo Delgado claimed the silver medal at the Central American & Caribbean Games last year, and won four bouts in the group stage of Season V in WSB.

The Mexican Lightweight used his reach to great effect against Colombia’s Pan American Games Qualifier silver medallist Faider Hernandez, which led to a deserved victory after the final bell had been sounded.

The second Mexican boxer who advanced to the quarter-finals on Day 2 was 22-year-old Pan American Games Qualifier silver medallist Marvin Cabrera, who has competed in almost twenty bouts during the last four seasons of WSB.

The 22-year-old Mexican southpaw controlled his bout with US National Trials winner Brian Ceballo, and will now meet Cuba’s London 2012 Olympic Champion Roniel Iglesias in the Welterweight quarter-final.

Surprise of the day

Dominican Republic’s Elvis Severino Rodriguez is one of the most inexperienced Lightweight boxers in Toronto, but the 19-year-old achieved a great victory over Venezuela’s Luis Angel Cabrera on Day 2.

Cabrera won the gold medal at the Pan American Games Qualifier in Tijuana last month, and has competed in 180 bouts since 2005, yet he could not deal successfully with the quick counter-attacks from his opponent.

The final verdict of their Lightweight bout was a unanimous decision triumph for Rodriguez, who will now meet with Cuba’s two-time AIBA World Champion Lazaro Alvarez in the quarter-finals.

Ones to watch

Pan American Games Qualifier gold medallist Carlos Andres Mina is one of the most promising Light Heavyweight boxers in the entire world, and the Ecuadorian famously defeated Cuba’s two-time AIBA World Champion team captain Julio Cesar De La Cruz last season in WSB.

His opponent on Day 2 was Commonwealth Games competitor Adrian Biscette who was the lone boxing representative from Barbados at the Games.

The Ecuadorian boxer knocked down Biscette in the opening round, which led to the referee stopping the bout very quickly after.

Brazil’s Rafael Duarte Lima only moved up to Super Heavyweight last year, but the experienced South American boxer was able to win the Pan American Games Qualifier in Tijuana in his new weight class.

The veteran boxer had to box Virgin Islands’ Clayton Laurent in their quarter-final bout, who won all three of his contests in Season V of WSB, and took part in the 2007 AIBA World Boxing Championships at the age of 17.

The Brazilian boxer was faster in the opening round, while Laurent used his strong jabs to try and negate the movement.

Lima’s stamina and technique proved to be the main difference between the two boxers in the final round, and he eventually earned a place in the semi-final and a guaranteed medal in Toronto.

Fact of the day

Four boxers from four different nations claimed at least a guaranteed bronze medal at the Toronto 2015 Pan American Games on Day 2, as the winners of the quarter-final bouts from today’s Super Heavyweight battles came from Cuba, United States of America, Brazil and Venezuela.

Quotes of the day

“My tactic today was to fight from long range against my tough US opponent. I had to improve my level during the whole bout. I felt good but I was a bit nervous as it was my opening fight in Toronto in such a big boxing event, and my rival was really strong. He sometimes hit really hard, so therefore I am satisfied with the victory,” said Mexico’s Marvin Cabrera after his Welterweight bout against US boxer Brian Ceballo.

“I knew I have to move a lot in my opening bout to advance to the next round. We built that tactic with my coaches, and it worked in the ring. I was a bit tired after the contest, and I know I have to fight in a more aggressive way against my next Cuban opponent,” commented Dominican Republic’s Elvis Severino Rodriguez.

“It was a good opening for me in Toronto. My Barbadian opponent was taller, and because of that difference my tactic was to pressurize him from the first seconds. I worked from close range, and felt very good in the first round. I hope I will be able to get the gold in Toronto,” said Ecuador’s Carlos Andres Mina.

Tomorrow’s program

The quarter-finals will be held on the third competition day across two sessions in Toronto.

The women’s boxers also began their competition in all of their competing weight classes: Flyweight (51 kg), Lightweight (60 kg) and Middleweight (75 kg).

Three further men’s categories will also be fighting for guaranteed medals on Day 3: Light Flyweight (49 kg), Bantamweight  (56 kg) and Middleweight (75 kg).