American light welterweight Jamel Herring lost his first-round Olympic bout with Kazakhstan’s Daniyar Yeleussinov on Tuesday afternoon in London. The 19-9 decision in Yeleussinov’s favor eliminated Herring, a Sergeant in the US Marine Corps, from the 2012 boxing tournament.
Herring, Coram, N.Y., is the second American boxer to be eliminated from the 2012 Olympic Games, as his light heavyweight teammate Marcus Browne was defeated on Monday. Three Americans will compete on Wednesday afternoon with bantamweight Joseph Diaz, Jr., of S. El Monte, Calif., heavyweight Michael Hunter, of Las Vegas, Nev., and super heavyweight Dominic Breazeale, of Alhambra, Calif.
Herring is one of the three team captains for the U.S. Olympic boxing team. Three-time Olympian Rau’Shee Warren and female lightweight Queen Underwood are the other two captains, and both still remain in the competition at this point. At 26, Herring is one of the oldest members of the team, and he has always brought both stability and lightheartedness to the 12-person squad.
Although he is clearly disappointed, Herring is looking at his defeat as an opportunity to support his teammates with even more dedication: “I’m gonna keep my head up as team captain. If I am down, then my team is down. It hurts to lose, of course, but I’m glad I was able to come here, put on a USA uniform and represent my country. I believe that I did the best of my ability, but he was just the better man today. It’s not the end of the world. I will go back to the drawing board, stick it out and I’m going to support my team to the last man.
“I went out there, I let my hands go. I fought, I fought hard I believe so I don’t want them (U.S. Boxing Team) to feel bad for one man going down; there’s still a whole team.”