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Sunday saw the first day of action at the APB-WSB Olympic Qualification Event in Vargas, Venezuela, following an electrifying opening ceremony at the renowned Jose Maria Vargas Dome that was watched by a packed crowd of 4,000 boxing fans. The six-day competition will see 26 Rio 2016 quota places awarded by the end of the action, three at each weight bar heavyweight (91kg) and super heavyweight (+91kg) where only the winners will qualify.

And it was the middleweight (75kg) and super heavyweight (+91kg) boxers in action on Day One, with WSB’s 23-year-old Raul Sanchez of the Puerto Rico Hurricanes twice knocking down veteran Serb pro boxer Geard Ajetovic in the final round of their opening bout to win the tie in style.

“My tactics always depend on my opponent’s style and skills, but I did not know the Serbian that well. I think I found a good rhythm, though, and now I am looking forward to my quarter-final contest,” said Dominican Republic’s Raul Sanchez after the bout.

Egyptian APB super heavyweight (+91kg) Ahmed Samir Abdelmoaz Hefny progressed to the quarter-finals after defeating Aruba’s Evan Nedd, before the Ukraine’s tough WSB star Rostyslav Arkhypenko beat USA Knockouts’ Brandon Lynch to reach the last eight.

Monday will see eighteen contests held during the second competition day, with the flyweight (52kg), lightweight (60kg), light welterweight (64kg), welterweight (69kg), light heavyweight (81kg) and heavyweight (91kg) wilboxers all in action.