Athletes from the World Series of Boxing excelled at the final Rio 2016 qualification event in the Venezuelan city of Vargas, achieving 15 quota places for the Olympic Games and a grand total of 21 medals, including 6 out of a possible 10 golds.
A total of 26 quota places were made available for the APB/WSB Olympic Qualification Event, where 79 athletes from 40 countries entered the competition, open to pro boxers from non-AIBA organisations for the first time.
The first of the 35 registered WSB names to take to the podium was Mexico Guerreros’ light flyweight (49kg) Joselito Velazquez, with the 23 year-old winning gold as well as qualifying for his first ever Olympic Games. At flyweight (52kg), Yoel Finol, a member of this year’s impressive Venezuela Caciques team, defeated Rafako Hussars Poland’s German boxer Hamza Touba in the final, with both earning Rio 2016 Quota Places.
Velazquez’s Mexico Guerreros’ lightweight (60kg) teammate Lindolfo Delgado also topped the podium with a superb display against Thailand’s pro boxer Amnat Ruenroeng, before Puerto Rico Hurricane’s Colombian boxer Juan Carlos Carrillo powered through to light heavyweight (81kg) gold, defeating the experienced Cameroonian pro Hassan Ndam Njikam in the final.
Another of the talented Guerreros squad, Ecuadorian heavyweight (91kg) Julio Cesar Castillo, qualified for his second Olympic Games, while the sole super heavyweight (+91kg) berth went to Venezuela Caciques’ veteran Edgar Ramon Munoz. A member of the Venezuelan national side since 2002, Munoz set the crowd alight with his gold-medal win over Ukraine Otamans’ Rostyslav Arkhypenko.