Cuban boxing prodigy Argilagos secures first Olympic medal

AFP , Wednesday 10 Aug 2016

Joahnys Argilagos Perez
Joahnys Argilagos Perez (CUB) of Cuba celebrates after winning his bout. (REUTERS)

Brilliant Cuban light flyweight Joahnys Argilagos underlined his rich potential as he became the first boxer at the Rio Olympics into the semi-finals to guarantee at least a bronze medal.

The 19-year-old Cuban prodigy and world champion had Kenya's Peter Warui running around in circles on the way to a unanimous points decision.

Argilagos displayed the full array of his electric footwork, at one point ducking a haymaker from Warui, whose momentum took him tumbling into the ropes.

The Cuban merely grinned back at his opponent and later delivered a sucker-punch while appearing to look in the opposite direction.

Argilagos faces Colombian Yurberjen Martinez -- who he has trained with in the past -- in the semis on Friday, after he defeated Samuel Carmona Heredia of Spain on a split points decision.

"I felt more confident that in my first fight," said Argilagos, after delivering one of the most impressive boxing displays in Rio to date.

"I knew I was going to bring joy to Cuba and I stuck to my tactical masterplan."

"The Colombian is going to be a very tough rival," added Argilagos, also a former youth world champion and one of the hottest prospects around.

"We have never fought but we have trained together and I know that he has some good weapons."

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