Olympian Mansueto “Onyok” Velasco will be in Bago City this weekend to attend the two-day Visayas Preliminaries of the PSC-Pacquiao Amateur Boxing Cup at the Bago City Sports Coliseum.
Velasco won the silver medal in the light flyweight division during the 1996 Atlanta Summer Olympics and a gold medal in the 1994 Asian Games held in Hiroshima, Japan.
His older brother Roel Velasco, a light-flyweight boxer also won a bronze medal at the 1992 Olympics.
Bago City is known as the “Boxing Capital of the Philippines” for being the hometown of the other Olympian boxers Reynaldo Galido, Isidro Vicera, Leopoldo Cantancio, Roger Ladon, and Larry Semillano.
Semillano was coached by Roger Fortaleza, technical director of the PSC Pacquiao Cup, when he won the gold medal in the 1997 Southeast Asian Games (SEAG) held in Jakarta.
Semillao also took a silver medal in the 2007 SEAG and also saw action in the Sydney Olympics. Semillano, 41, is now the head coach of the Bago City boxing team that will see action this weekend.
“We're hoping to discover the next Olympians here,” said Fortaleza, who also had his own memorable moments in Bago City.
He was the youngest of the four fighting Fortaleza brothers, who each captured a gold medal to give the Far Eastern University boxing team the overall title in the National Youth Amateur Boxing Championship.
The other Fortaleza brothers are Rey, Renato, and Ricardo.
Aside from Bago, also expected to join are teams from Bacolod City, Murcia, Sipalay, Victorias, San Carlos City, Escalante, Cebu, Mactan, Lapu-Lapu, Leyte, Iloilo, Tacloban and Bohol.
Bago City Mayor Nico Yulo promised to give the visiting teams and guests a memorable experience in his city, which is billed as the “Home of Historical and Natural Treasures”.*PNA
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