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Gabuco still in contention

Former world champion Josie Gabuco continued her dominance in her weight division after marching into the quarterfinals of the AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships in Astana, Kazakhstan Monday night.

Gabuco walloped Bulgarian fighter Volha Lushchyk via unanimous decision in her bid to duplicate her golden feat in the 45-48kg light flyweight division back in 2012.

The three judges had it 39-37 for the 29-year-old Gabuco in the four-round fight that set her a meeting with Wang Yuyan of China, who tallied a split decision win over Valeria Calabrese of Italy.

“Josie is showing her old bravado and motivation. I expect her to go all out for a podium finish,” said ABAP Executive Director Ed Picson.

Although young, Wang proved to be dangerous after beating Russia’s national champion Ekaterina Pinigina in the opening round.

Gabuco remains the lone Filipina fighter standing in the prestigious tournament after Nesthy Petecio failed in her bid to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics in the 51kg class, with Irish Magno crashing out early in the 54kg non-Olympic weight division.

Gabuco’s weight division is not included in the Rio Games.