With the AIBA American Olympic Qualifying Event in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, mere weeks away, the South American Championships held in Rancagua, Chile, was the perfect preparation as the race for the remaining 38 Continental quota places for the London 2012 Olympic Games hots up.
Following the Independence Cup, this Panamerican tournament saw boxers from Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, hosts Chile, Colombia and Ecuador taking part in order to fine-tune their skills to be ready for the big showdown in Rio from 4-13 May at the Maracanazinho.
Ecuador topped the team ranking in the South American Championships while Brazil finished in the runner-up position as hosts Chile achieved third place in Rancagua. Ecuador is still in the developing stage but the nation's training program has gathered momentum and several of their fighters stand good chances of achieving qualification for the London 2012 Olympic Games.
The Chileans have got great tradition in the sport, dating back to their triple success at the 1956 Melbourne Olympic Games when the country took home a silver and two bronze medals from Australia. They have been trying to recapture the glory days and have been working hard to unearth the next talent and challenge for honours.
Ecuador's first gold medal in these Championships was achieved by Giovanni Camacho, who had returned to his national squad earlier this year. The young Flyweight athlete triumphed over Colombia's Rafael Barrera to secure a career highlight in Rancagua.
18-year-old National Elite Champion and Golden Belt Youth Tournament winner Joedison Teixeira is one of the big Brazilian hopes with the talented teenager having great expectations for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. He demonstrated why he is held in such high regard with an excellent tournament in Rancagua, Teixeira's two victories in the early stages paved the way for a gold medal as he outpointed Colombia's Arley Leal in their final.
Chile's South American Games quarter-finalist Daniel Munoz claimed the host nation's only victory after beating Ecuador's former Panamerican Cadet Championships silver medallist Luis Pico in the Light Welterweight class.
Ecuador's top welterweight boxer, 20-year-old Panamerican Youth Championships silver medallist Anderson Rojas, who competed at the Vllaznia Memorial Tournament in Albania, before flying out to Chile, defeated all of his rivals to claim the title in Rancagua. In the final, the fledgling Ecuadorian overpowered Brazil's Roberto Queiroz.
Ecuador's Independence Cup bronze medallist Marlon Delgado, who made the step up to to the national team this year, unexpectedly eliminated Brazil's Youth Olympic Games winner David Lourenco in the semi-finals before then defeating Chile's Joseph to take gold.
The Heavyweight title went to Ecuador's former Panamerican Champion Julio Castillo, who claimed a resounding victory over Chile's Miguel Vilchez.
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