Tokyo Olympics: Nesthy Petecio dedicates historic medal to LGBTQ+ community

Nesthy Petecio

Another landmark moment has been recorded at the Tokyo Olympics after Nesthy Petecio became the first woman from the Philippines to win a medal in boxing.

The 29-year-old finished second in the women's featherweight final, coming up against Japan's Sena Irie who added another gold to the home nation's tally.

Petecio's medal win was a huge moment for so many people.

Despite being less experienced than her rival, Japanese fighter Irie won the bout 5-0. But Petecio was still more than delighted with second place.

Overcome with emotion during the ceremony, the Filipino couldn't hold back the tears as she clutched her silver medal to her chest. The honour for both her and her country was plain to see even from behind her mask.

Petecio's father said the family still couldn't believe she was competing at the Olympics and told of how his daughter worked with recycled clothes for gloves and a slipper as a punching bag when she was young.

Now, Petecio has made history for her country. After receiving her silver medal, the boxer dedicated her performance to the LGBTQ+ community in an emotional post-awards speech.

As an openly gay athlete, giving the LGBTQ+ community a platform for visibility is hugely important to Petecio. 

"I am proud to be part of the LGBTQ community. This fight is also for the LGBTQ community," she told Filipino outlet The Inquirer. 

"No matter what our gender is, as long as we have a dream, we fight. Ignore people who bring you down and the things they say,"

Petecio's Olympic silver medal marks the ninth career medal of her amateur boxing career. She also boasts a World Championship title and three silvers at the Southeast Asian Games.

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