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Cuban top seed tames Pinoy pug

HAMBURG, Germany – Cuban top seed Yosbany Veitia ruined Filipino flyweight Dannel Maamo’s quest Monday in the 17th AIBA World Championship at the Sporthalle.

Veitia hacked out a unanimous decision to earn a trip to the quarterfinals but not before being subjected to some hurt and pain by Maamo, a first-timer in the worlds.

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Maamo, though he lost on the scorecards of the judges from Algeria, Trinidad and Tobago, Canada, Germany and India, gave a good account of himself by engaging Veitia in heated exchanges at ring center in the first round.

But what cost Maamo’s bid were the two points slapped against him by Russian referee Sergey Krutasov for low blows in the second round.

In the third round, Maamo went for broke but Veitia wisely used his ring generalship and picked his shots to prevent his gutsy foe from gaining ground.

Maamo, 21, had vowed not to get intimidated at the sheer sight of Veitia, silver medalist in 2015 and bronze medal winner in 2013.

His display of courage impressed national coaches Nolito Velasco and Ronald Chavez and even executive director Ed Picson, who believes Maamo will blossom into one of their main men.

Veitia, 25, drew a first-round bye since he is the division’s No. 1 seed while Maamo had to scrape past Mahomed Otukile of Botswana in his first fight over the weekend.

Maamo’s defeat left the Philippines without a fighter advancing into the crucial stages of the nine-day slugfest.