Boxing Event In the Dominican Republic
Has Been Cancelled!
(May 29th) The boxing event that was scheduled to take place on Saturday in the Dominican Republic was cancelled at the last minute following the recommendations of the government of the Caribbean country, according to Shuan Boxing Promotion.
It is very important to respect the political and health authorities in the midst of the Covid-19 situation, so it was decided to follow the indications and suspend the event. Two regional titles of the World Boxing Association (WBA) were going to be at stake, however, we will wait for the right moment to carry out the event.
It is worth mentioning that before the cancellation all the necessary measures had been fulfilled, supported by the safety protocol published by the WBA a few weeks ago. The fighters had already undergone rapid tests of the Covid-19 with negative results, while the venue of the event, the Carlos Teo Cruz Coliseum, had been sanitized.
The WBA supports the decision of the authorities, who know the situation first-hand, and hopes that the boxing card can be set up in the future under the ideal conditions complying with all health measures.
Covid-19 Testing Completed
For Saturday’s Event In the Dominican Republic!
By: WBA Press
(May 28th) Boxers and staff members for this Saturday’s event in the Dominican Republic completed the Covid-19 quick test and the results were negative. Shuan Boxing will organize the event in which two regional titles of the World Boxing Association (WBA) will be at stake, and all the regulations have been fulfilled to carry out this great event in the midst of the current situation.
A total of 45 quick tests were held for fighters, trainers, corner personnel, judges, referees, round girls, announcer, promoters and all those who will be on the premises on Saturday night.
This Wednesday night all the fighters and their teams were transported individually to the concentration hotel, after confirming that there is not a single positive case among them.
Now they are focused on the last details of their preparations and on the weigh-in ceremony next Friday. The WBA has worked hand in hand with Shuan Boxing Promotion and has provided all the support possible to make this boxing event a success. It will be broadcasted by ESPN Knockout and will feature some great Dominican talents as well.
The main event will be the WBA-Fedelatin Super Flyweight title fight between Norbelto “Meneíto” Jiménez and Eliézer “Campeoncito” Aquino. Also, Juan Carlos Cordones and José Luis Salazar will fight for the WBA-Fedecaribe Super Lightweight belt.
Six Officials Will Work
In the Dominican Republic Boxing Event!
(Puello dominates Alonso to become the new WBA was interim Super Lightweight Champ)
By: WBA Press
(May 27th) The boxing card that will take place this Saturday night in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, and that will have two regional titles of the World Boxing Association (WBA) at stake, will have a technical staff of six people for all the fights.
The decision to use only six professionals to carry out the technical tasks is due to the Covid-19 situation. A reduced staff allows more comforts and makes the practice of the sport safer.
Jesús Ceballos, Franklin Fulgencio, Maximiliano del Rosario, Maximiliano de Aza, Smailin Valdez and Oscar Peña are the ones appointed to exercise authority during the evening. Peña and Valdez will be the referees and the rest will serve as judges.
In the main fight, Peña will be the third man in the ring and Fulgencio, del Rosario and Ceballos will be the judges.
Shuan Boxing Promotion will implement this and other methods to meet the demands of the authorities. It’s worth remembering that, among other measures, only few people will be able to enter the ring on the day of the fight, so the announcer and the round girls will do their job in a platform far from the ring.
The evening will have two WBA belts at stake. The main event will be the WBA-Fedelatin title fight between the charismatic Norbelto “Meneíto” Jiménez, former world champion challenger, and Eliézer “Campeoncito” Aquino. On the other hand, Juan Carlos Cordones and José Luis Salazar will fight for the WBA-Fedecaribe Super Lightweight belt in the undercard.
The Venue for Saturday’s Event
In the Dominican Republic
Will Be Disinfected This Thursday!
By: WBA Press
(May 26th) As part of the security precautions for this May 30th boxing program in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, the disinfection of the Carlos “Teo” Cruz Coliseum has been programed for Thursday, as one of the most important measures to ensure the health and well-being of all those who will be working that evening.
The program will have two regional World Boxing Association (WBA) belts at stake and will follow the health protocol issued a couple of weeks ago by the pioneer organization’s Medical Committee.
Shuan Boxing Promotion representatives assured they are working with local authorities and have already coordinated the disinfection of the premises. The product to be used is Fifth Generation Ammonium Quaternary; disinfection booths will also be available, as well as temperature taking for all personnel entering the place that day. Evidently, everyone will be tested for Covid-19 during this week.
The WBA has been monitoring closely everything that is going on around the event and has been providing support, advice, and sending out safety kits with important items for the fighters, trainers and all the professionals who will be working on the boxing card.
It is great news for the boxing world to know that events with titles at stake are coming back and that they are done in the right way, while respecting local and world authorities to safeguard the health of all involved.
The WBA Held Its Second Judges and Referees Seminar With More Than a Hundred Participants!
By: WBA Press
(May 26th) The World Boxing Association (WBA) continues to develop the WBA Academy and this Saturday it held the second online Judges and Referees seminar “How to score a round and refereeing procedure”, which reached maximum capacity once again and also had simultaneous Spanish-English interpretation.
Webinars with the presence of the best specialists have been one of the Academy’s projects and the public has had a great response. On the first event, made a couple of weeks ago, many users weren’t able to participate, so on the second event the intention was to give them another opportunity.
The world-class judges and referees Luis Pabón, Roberto Torres, Raúl Cáiz Jr., Octavio Rodríguez and Gustavo Padilla were in charge of the second webinar as well. Its dynamic structure, along with attendees’ participation, have been two of the fundamental aspects for the success of this initiative.
The WBA will continue to give seminars, such as the one that took place a week ago with the Medical Committee, and each time they will be extended to different areas of interest with the intention of contributing to the training of boxing personnel in all areas.
Boxing Returns to Dominican Republic
Using the WBA Safety Protocol!
By: WBA Press
(May 23rd) The World Boxing Association (WBA) will sanction two regional titles on Saturday, May 30th, in the Dominican Republic. The company Shuan Boxing is organizing an event with the best talents of the Caribbean country, which will be broadcasted by ESPN KnockOut. This will be the first event in which the Safety Protocol created by the WBA Medical Committee will be used as a guideline.
The event will be held behind closed doors and all measures will be taken to safeguard the health of the participants. Local authorities have approved the program, and it is worth mentioning that the WBA protocol will always be applied considering local regulations and adapting it to the requirements of each country.
The main event will be the WBA-Fedelatin title fight between the charismatic Norbelto “Meneíto” Jiménez, former world champion challenger, and Eliézer “Campeoncito” Aquino. On the other hand, Juan Carlos Cordones and José Luis Salazar will fight for the WBA-Fedecaribe Super Lightweight belt.
“The WBA is focused on getting the activity back on track and for that reason we are supporting several promoters around the world. However, the most important thing is that boxing returns in a safe way. That is why we created the most complete health protocol to serve as a guideline for those who have the possibility of doing boxing. Most importantly, the well-being of the athlete is paramount, and that is where all our efforts are focused on”, said Gilberto Jesús Mendoza, president of the WBA.
Meanwhile, Bélgica Peña, from Shuan Boxing, talked about her team’s motivation: “Everything came up after watching an interview of Gilberto Jesús Mendoza with ESPN KnockOut where we saw that we had the opportunity to develop it in our country. Before getting the permissions, we put the boxers to work in isolation, we organized a careful health protocol which we shared with the WBA and they strengthened it in order to ensure the safety of the boxers and everyone involved”.
These measures are very specific and thorough. The athletes and their teams who will be fighting on Saturday night are already in preventive isolation separately. They will wait until Wednesday to undergo the serological test to determine if they are free of Covid-19. Only after testing negative they will be able to go to the concentration hotel.
On Thursday, the gym will be completely disinfected, using previously authorized products and following the recommendations of the relevant institutions. The weigh-in ceremony on the 28th will have all the necessary precautions, including the use of an acrylic guard to separate the fighters when they go face to face, while all the staff will carry implements such as a mask, an antibacterial gel and everything included in the security kit previously sent by the WBA.
The day of the fight, only essential personnel will be allowed into the ring, meaning only the fighters and referees, while the technical personnel will have the necessary distances between them to be around the ring. The announcer will do his job in a platform far from the ring; and the round girls will also be in a remote area, not in the ring.
Athletes will be transported separately in individual cars. Since there will be no public, there will be plenty of space in the venue, so no one will share dressing rooms, every team will have their own spaces. Except for the fighters, everybody in the place will use masks and all the necessary gear to maintain safety. The WBA is happy that the sport is back, and boxers can fight for their belts. The major challenge will be to keep all the necessary precautions to make a perfect event, and all the confidence is in the hands of Shuan Boxing for its implementation.
The WBA Announces
Security Protocol for the Prompt Return of Boxing!
(click above to read 5 Phase Plan)
WBA Medical Committee Establishes
Method For the Safe Return of Boxing!
By: WBA Press
(May 17th) The World Boxing Association (WBA) held a medical seminar in which it shared its suggestions for the proper restoration of boxing activity amid Covid-19. The debate discussed many interesting ideas, all taken from the safety protocol that will be published this week. In addition, there were important points such as the explanation of the five stages that should be taken in order to reach normality, the proposal by President Gilberto Jesús Mendoza to use an acrylic guard at the face-to-face encounters and the delivery of the WBA health kit that will be given to all the participants of the boxing cards.
The doctors explained, among many important points, the phases that must be fulfilled to return to normality, which they divided into five stages. The first is the Isolation Training, which consists of individual home training. The second one is Training with a trainer, and can be divided into three phases: non-contact, with contact and in gyms.
The third stage is the return to training in public facilities or gyms, while the fourth is holding events behind closed doors and with limited staff. Finally, the fifth phase refers to boxing events with an audience and without limitations. The implementation of each phase will depend on the country and the provisions of each authority. Boxing organizers must adapt to local provisions according to the stage each country is in.
The WBA kit for fighters, coaches and staff was also announced. It will include gel, masks, gloves, and other safety equipment for each participant.
Six well-known WBA Medical Committee doctors discussed boxing practice amid the pandemic. The seminar was called “The Impact of Covid-19 on Daily Boxing Activity”. A total of 197 people got connected to learn from the specialists, who gave details about the safety measures to be taken for the practice of boxing and how the virus has affected the sport.
Nina Radcliff, graduated in Biomedical Sciences at the University of California; Jorge Ramírez; Physical Education Professor from the Institute of Physics, Culture and Sport of Kiev, Ukraine; Joseph Estwanik, Orthopedic Surgeon and member of the Carolina Hall of Fame; Shivana Inalsingh, certified in Anatomy and Physiology from the American College of Health Sciences, Karanjeet Singh, a member of the ASBC Medical Commission; and Saúl Saucedo, a doctor from the Autonomous University of Mexico with extensive experience in sport; were in charge of this seminar, which was also attended by WBA President, Gilberto Jesús Mendoza.
They all worked together to create a special health protocol, which is intended to be a guideline for the reactivation of boxing and will be published this week for commissions and promoters to learn from the best specialists all the necessary precautions to be taken in order to carry out events in a safe way.
Mendoza’s proposal on the use of an acrylic guard at the face-to-face encounters during the weigh-ins was very interesting. The intention, he explained, is to limit direct contact between them before fights to reduce risks.
The seminar had a very special moment with the participation of Don Muzzi, who has been in charge of the security measures of the recent UFC events. He explained what the experience in the UFC has been like, what successes and failures they’ve had and how they have learned from the two events they’ve held this month. He welcomed the WBA panelists’ ideas in an exchange whose sole purpose was to learn about the situation and apply all that learning to our sport.
The WBA continues to work towards reestablishing boxing, but under the most rigorous security measures that guarantee the most suitable practice of the sport.
The WBA Is Working
For A Safe Sport In Times of Pandemic!
By: WBA Press
(May 13th) A detailed description of the recommended medical procedures and protocols for the safe celebration of boxing matches in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, marked the discussion of the World Boxing Association’s Directorate meeting, held online on Tuesday with the full participation of the organization’s leaders and medical committee.
With the objective of creating optimal prevention and safety guidelines that will contribute to the return to action in the short term, the president of the WBA, Gilberto Mendoza, and the members of the medical committee shared with the plenary the progress of the master document of the medical protocol designed by the Institution, which will serve as a reference for the organizers and promoters of boxing events who, in the midst of the de-escalation in their respective countries, will move forward in the organization of events, in strict compliance with the general rules dictated by their national health authorities.
As part of this initiative, the WBA Academy will hold on Saturday, May 16th, the WBA online Medical Seminar, where the main topics of the proposal will be reported and discussed. This proposal has been drawn up in accordance with the recommendations of the World Health Organization and on the basis of technical and scientific criteria and the characteristics of our sport.
The WBA aims to present one of the most comprehensive health guidelines for carrying out boxing in today’s conditions. Once it is finished, the WBA will work hand in hand with the different commissions for its application, in order to promote the health of all those involved in a boxing performance.
Medical Seminar: WBA Academy’s next step
The medical seminar is the next step among the activities of the Academy, which already had a resounding success last week with the Judges and Referees’ seminar, which had more than 150 participants. The aim now is to involve interested people, but also officials working in the national boxing commissions, who can benefit from the information.
Hopefully, once the seminar is completed, the WBA’s official health protocol will be published.
This medical seminar will focus on the impact of Covid-19 on daily boxing activity and will have first class speakers such as Shivana Inalsingh, Joseph Estwanik, Nina Radcliff, Saul Saucedo, Karanjeet Singh and Jorge Ramírez. They worked together to create the health protocol that will be announced in the next few days.
The Directorate meeting discussed important topics about boxers who have to travel to fight, and how to coordinate with local doctors for pre-fight testing. Security measures for judges and referees and all the personnel working behind closed doors were also discussed.
The board had a pleasant closing, with the presence of the singer Zandú, who performed three of his songs to everyone connected to the meeting and received applause for his great performance. Although the date of the next meeting was not set, it was scheduled to take place in about a week to update on the medical topic and to discuss other topics, such as classifications.
WBA Judges and Referees Seminar Was a Success!
By: WBA Press
(May 9th) The judges and referees seminar “How to score a round and refereeing procedure”, given by the World Boxing Association (WBA) through the WBA Academy, brought together more than a hundred participants for about three hours to learn from the experts about the complex job of rendering justice in boxing.
WBA President, Gilberto Jesús Mendoza, was present at the seminar and welcomed all the participants. He gave the floor to speakers Gustavo Padilla, Luis Pabón, Roberto Torres, Raúl Caíz Jr. and Octavio Rodríguez. The online seminar was the first of its kind and was very dynamic, allowing participants to ask questions while complementary slides were shown on the screens.
The WBA Academy was born in 2016 and has grown greatly over the years. A new stage has arrived to bring new people into the world of boxing, just like in this case, aiming to encourage the interest of boxing lovers to become judges and referees.
Some of the topics discussed were how to score a round, legal and illegal punches, scoring factors, the ten-point must system, decision types, the referee’s uniform, movement and position, attributions, language and signs, among many other basic and non-basic aspects.
The WBA is proud that this first seminar reached maximum attendance, which is a great motivation to do others in the future. In addition to courses for judges and referees, it will also focus on training, medical staff, managers, fighters, and all those who play essential roles in this discipline.
The WBA Mourns the Passing
Of Its Former President Bobby Lee!
By: WBA Press
(April 30th) Robert “Bobby” Lee died this week in Hawaii at the age of 99. The World Boxing Association (WBA) mourns the death of its former president, who served from 1972 to 1974 and whose legacy will live on in world boxing history.
Bobby dedicated his whole life to boxing and was always linked to it in one way or another. Since the age of 8, he practiced amateur boxing during the 1930s and the 1940s.
He made a total of 45 amateur fights before retiring and moving on to other things, but he was always involved in the sport he loved. That’s how he ascended, he got to know boxing from the inside and that helped him become a leader.
Lee is Hawaii’s most important and influential boxing commissioner in history. He did a lot for the sport in his state, partnering with great promoters to make it grow and brought his experience to the WBA presidency during his years as the pioneer organization leader.
In 1982 he was the opponent of President Emeritus Gilberto Mendoza in the nomination for the position. Despite the logical disputes, mutual respect always prevailed and is evidenced by Mendoza’s words about Lee: “I don’t remember the exact amount of votes with which I won the election, that’s in the minutes from that day, but it was a tough fight against an amazing man, whom I respect and admire, like Bobby Lee”.
Lee also worked with the WBC in various positions and advised many of the world’s leaders. Today he rests in peace after a great life, and boxing thanks him for his contribution.
The WBA sends words of condolence to his family and friends. The world of boxing has lost a great man but he will always be remembered by everyone. Thank you very much, Bobby.
The WBA Makes Progress
In the Creation of a Health Protocol for Boxing Events!
By: WBA Press
(April 29th) The second meeting of the World Boxing Association’s (WBA) Directorate Members held online had a breakthrough in the intention to set the guidelines for holding closed door events with all the safety protocols related to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The meeting of the pioneer organization leaders, headed by President Gilberto Jesús Mendoza, had three proposals of basic measures -based on the recommendations of the World Health Organization-, by the specialized doctors of the boxing body. The intention, beyond reactivating boxing, is to do it in the most appropriate way avoiding any possible health risks.
Once all the proposals were presented, Mendoza requested the doctor’s coordination to create a unique plan based on the proposals. This document will go through a legal approval process and is intended to be distributed to promoters, commissions, trainers, boxers, as a guide for the realization of events in the short and long term.
In addition, the meeting served to formalize the entrance of two Mexican members to the Directorate. The first is Miguel Torruco, who is also the National Boxing Commissioner in Mexico, and Alfredo Polanco. The appointments are important because they both bring experience to the table and they come from a country with a long boxing tradition like Mexico. This is the first time that two Mexicans are members of the WBA directorate at the same time.
Also, Jorge Humberto Klee, Director, announced that he will retire from his daily activities due to some health issues. In spite of the situation, the Colombian will maintain a position as a lifetime member of the organization and will continue as an advisor in different areas.
The second remote meeting of the oldest body in the world in the midst of the situation of Covid-19 has already set the bases and expects to have the health protocol ready in a week time.
Ryan Garcia Heading For The Big Leagues!
By: WBA Press
(April 26th) Everything that seems to be a sudden success has a history behind it, and this case is no exception, but another example of the worth of staying on track with clear objectives. The amateur journey is the maternal cradle space where mistakes must be made to learn, or the sum of repeated actions over time that eventually fixate on who practices the sport best or not according to the conscience and seriousness with which they decide to proceed.
This is the case of the young Lightweight prospect, the Mexican-American Ryan Garcia, who completed more than 200 amateur fights before becoming a professional boxer.
Garcia has been nicknamed “Kingry” or “The Flash” due to his boxing style, and today, he is one of the new international stars: his speed of movement and the strength of his punches have led him to achieve 17 KOs in the 20 victories he has had since his debut in Tijuana in 2016.
Ryan’s last presentation was just before the global sanitary emergency broke out, so he was able to fight and, within 80 seconds of the match, he sent the experienced Nicaraguan Francisco Fonseca to the canvas and made a big impact. That same night, the “Golden Boy” Jorge Linares also had a great victory showing that he maintains his physical power and is willing to do more. There has been a lot of speculation about a possible fight with Jorge when sporting events can be resumed. If it happens, Garcia’s clash with Linares would propel him to the big leagues where he moves now and he could have the opportunity to dispute the World Boxing Association championship against another young star, Gervonta Davis.
Ryan Garcia was born in the city of Victorville, California, on August 8th, 1999. He has three sisters named Demi, Sasha and Kayla and a brother named Sean Garcia who also boxes. His mother, Lisa, is in charge of the finances and administration of the house while his father, Henry, has been focused on training the boys since the beginning.
The Garcias’ garage has been the training room where Ryan and Sean began their boxing training. Ryan knew he would be a boxer from the age of seven, which led him to enter the ring at eight and keep moving forward to the present after winning several medals in youth amateur: he was 15 times Gold Medal National Champion, Silver medalist in the 2014 World Youth Championship, and Gold in the same event but in 2016 as part of the U.S. team, to name some of his achievements.
His parents talk about Ryan as a person who has always, from his childhood, been calm, cheerful and focused, with very clear ideas. He has a personality that some may consider arrogant, but his mother says that he is just a natural self-confident. Now it will be his turn not only to continue forging his own path which he has just begun but also to accompany the growth of Rylie, his daughter born in March 2019. Two great responsibilities for a 21-year-old who already has the eyes of the world looking forward to greater challenges.
Santa Cruz: “We Are Focused
On the Fight Against Gervonta”!
(photo: Stephanie Trapp)
By: WBA Press
(April 24th) Leo Santa Cruz spoke with World Boxing Association (WBA) President, Gilberto Jesús Mendoza, on Instagram Live. Mendoza talked to the WBA Featherweight and Super Featherweight Super Champion about many interesting points, including his plan to face Gervonta Davis in his next fight.
“We’re focused on the fight against Gervonta Davis. The negotiation was very advanced, but with this situation it has slowed down. We thought it could be in May or June but now we are waiting for a new date”, said Santa Cruz.
Mendoza announced that the request for the Santa Cruz-Davis fight has already arrived at his office, which means that negotiations are already well underway. About the weight, Leo assured that the information he has is that it will be in 130 pounds but he did not discard to go up to Lightweight if the American could not meet the weight in Super Featherweight.
The Mexican fighter and Mendoza talked about different personal and professional matters, such as Leo’s opinion about the late Edwin Valero, who he had the opportunity to see sparring with his brothers and who he said had an impressive punch.
On the other hand, Santa Cruz talked about his rivalry with Abner Mares and the possibility of fighting him in a third fight.
“Of course, I’ve said it. If people want it, I’d do it. People liked that fight. I let the promoters and managers do it and if they tell me, I will do it”, said the Los Angeles-trained boxer.
Among other points, Mendoza asked the “Famoso Terremoto” about the creation of his promotional company, and although he pointed out that he is not working on it at 100%, he said that it is a project to help boxers who start from the bottom, as he did, and develop their careers.
Santa Cruz added that he would be happy to participate in different WBA projects with young boxers and in favor of the underprivileged, and that he would accept any invitation for boxing and youth.
Maidana Wants To Be World Champion Again!
By: WBA Press
(April 22nd) Marcos René Maidana had an excellent chat with the president of the World Boxing Association (WBA), Gilberto Jesús Mendoza, through Instagram Live, in which he spoke about his career, different anecdotes and his still keen intention to return to boxing and retire as a champion, he said.
The “Chino” talked about his fight against the kickboxer Acero Cali, that he will take as a thermometer to evaluate his physical condition and continue working on a return to boxing. He stressed that he takes that step very carefully, as he doesn’t want to tarnish an outstanding career like his with a wrong decision.
The Argentine boxer recalled several passages of his career, like his participation in the WBA KO Drugs in 2006, his memorable title fight against Victor Ortiz, and his two matches fights against Floyd Mayweather, the best boxer of an entire era.
About his fight with Floyd, Maidana clarified a doubt that many people have about the American’s tooth that went flying in one of the fights because of his punches. Marcos René said that a friend gave him the piece and that he keeps it today as a nice memento.
Mendoza pointed out that Maidana is one of those rare fighters who always gives an extra mile in the ring, a virtue that drove him to achieve great things and that even Maidana could not explain in the conversation.
The President of the pioneer organization will continue to have conversations with boxers in the following days. On Thursday, he will have one with Mexican Champion Leo Santa Cruz, who will also talk about his career and future plans.
Ali, The Most-Watched Boxer In Movies!
By: WBA Press
(April 20th) Many human behavior analysts have always wondered why some people who conceive boxing as a brutal and primitive sport, leave such criteria aside when they go to the movies or watch it on TV. They have fun and even cheer excitedly when they watch a “fake” fight on the screen. However, they do not react in the same way if it is a documentary on boxing, which they watch with complete indifference.
Pablo Mérida, the Hispanic author of ‘El boxeo en el cine 1894-1994’ (Boxing in the cinema 1894-1994), offers a simple answer to the question, although there could be several: simply, according to Mérida, the reason is that they know that what they are watching is something from the unreal world, it’s fantasy, and they reject the true facts, in the second case.
Even though what follows is not directly related to the previous lines, it is worth mentioning that boxing is the sports discipline with the greatest participation in the Big Screen, almost from the very birth of the Seventh Art industry, which was created by the French brothers Auguste and Louis Lumiére, who copyrighted their invention on February 13, 1895 and then made their first film, Departure of the Workers from the Lumiére Factory in Lyon Monplaisir, which was, of course, presented on March 12th of the same year, three days after the filming.
Mérida says that since Thomas Alva Edison, who invented the kinetoscope and the kinetograph, joined forces with scientist William K.L. Dickson in order to form the embryo of what would eventually become the boxing film, the result of which would be the first film about the sport of fists, called The Leonard-Cushing Fight, whose rudimentary filming began on June 15, 1894 and was shown a few months later in a location on 83rd Street in New York. “None of the participants in the filming, nor any newspaper gave a clear version of how the evening ended…(but) boxing in the cinema was now a reality”(*).
From then until today, hundreds, if not thousands, of real and fictional fights have been presented in the cinema, with Muhammad Ali as the real-life character who has most often been at the center of the plot in documentaries such as “When We Were Kings”, “Ali, the Greatest”, “Facing Ali” and the most recent “I am Ali” (2014), as well as the well-known “Ali”, a film in which the actor Will Smith played the most famous boxer in history.
This is a very interesting topic that can be expanded and will be covered again in a future issue with new data.
De Gracia & Arboleda Haven’t Stopped Training In Panama!
By: Jesús Milano
(April 19th) Panama is a country where you can breathe boxing in every corner and its stars are recognized worldwide. The difficulties the world faces today have put its boxers in a complicated situation and many of them, including Bryan de Gracia and Jaime Arboleda, have had to reinvent their training methods.
Both World Boxing Association (WBA) world rankers spoke to Mi Diario, a local newspaper with national circulation, about how train at home in the midst of the contingency.
“It is very difficult for a high-performance athlete who is used to training 5 or 6 hours a day to put a stop to it. We will get rusty”, “La Roca” De Gracia highlighted to the journalist Aurelio Ortiz, who wrote the article.
The Featherweight fighter detailed his routine at home: “I had to improvise and adapt to the circumstances. I jump for 40 minutes with all my clothes on, then between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. I hit a sack of water I hung outside my house. After this ends, I must have some rhythm and be ready to fight as soon as possible”.
Meanwhile, Arboleda is also in that situation, but the Super Featherweight contender, who has just beaten Jayson Velez in an elimination fight in Allentown, has the support of his father and brother, which he describes as a great advantage.
“I do jumping rope, then with my brother I do some punching mitts and everything else that goes with it. The only thing I don’t do is punching the bag because I don’t have one”, said the 25-year-old boxer.
Panama has slowed down due to the pandemic, but its fighters are waiting for the moment to go back to the ring. Meanwhile, they are working to be in the best shape possible when the time comes.
Andy Ruiz Jr.: “I’d Like To Go With Team Canelo”!
(photo Majo Gómez)
By: WBA Press
(April 17th) Gilberto Jesús Mendoza, president of the World Boxing Association (WBA), conducted an interview with former Heavyweight Champion and boxing star Andy Ruiz. Nearly 1,000 people logged in through the president’s Instagram Live, @GilberticoWBA, to watch the interview with “The Destroyer” who, among other things, noted that he wants to join Chepo and Eddy Reynoso’s team.
As it is well known, Ruiz is looking for a new trainer to face this new phase of his career and he assured that there have been approaches so that Canelo’s trainers can be in his corner.
We’re talking to the Reynoso team and I think it’d be good for me. Right now, there is no contract signed but I’d like to go with Team Canelo”, said the American native but with Mexican roots.
Ruiz talked about what he hopes for his future and said he wants to take it one step at a time, make a comeback fight and then think about names like Luis “King Kong” Ortiz, Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury or his longed-for rematch with Joshua.
Ruiz’ global fame came from his unexpected win last year against Joshua. The legacy ruined the Briton’s U.S. debut and he won the WBA Super Championship in addition to the IBF and WBO belts.
“I was thinking that was my chance for the world series because I lost the first one (to Parker). I was training hard and focused on winning. My whole family was praying for a chance and it came”, he said.
Two moments before that fight were very important. One was the rumor that Ruiz had contacted Eddie Hearn through Instagram to ask him for a chance to face Joshua, a fact that Ruiz confirmed to Mendoza while laughing. Another fact they talked about was the moment after the weigh-in when he borrowed Joshua’s belts.
“I remember when your father, you and I were talking. At that time everyone was with Joshua and he came over and let you borrow his belts”, Mendoza recalled, and Ruiz replied: “I told him that they looked very nice and he asked me if I wanted to see them. When I had them all in my hand I asked God to help me win, and in the end what I wished happened”.
With the victory came recognition, fame and everything else. There were positive things like the opportunity to meet with the President of Mexico, Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador, another significant event in which Ruiz was accompanied by Mendoza.
“I was proud of that. I didn’t even believe it until they told me I was going to fly to Mexico City. I was able to meet him, proud to see great friends like Miguel Torruco, who called me and was the link to meet the President”, said Ruiz.
However, that same fame brought about negative things that Ruiz is now aware of. He accepted that he didn’t train well and didn’t get to 100 percent for his second fight against Joshua in December, and it cost him a lot.
“I was too fat to chase him and look for combinations. I didn’t throw my punches right”, he said.
But he knows that he can get back on his feet in a short time and that’s why he works both physically and mentally: “I think I have to focus on myself. It was never like the first time. There are a lot of opportunities, but I have to focus and think that I can be a champion again”.
Andy Ruiz Jr: A Tamer of the Unthinkable!
By: WBA Press
(April 15th) Since the so-called ‘renaissance’ of the heavyweights after Tyson Fury’s victory over the then undisputed champion Wladimir Klitschko in 2015, there had never been such a great a surprise in boxing’s top division like the one seen on June 1st, 2019, when Mexico’s Andy Ruiz Jr. knocked out the unified king, Anthony “AJ” Joshua.
That night changed, as fate would have it, the life of Andrés Ponce Ruiz Jr, ‘El Destroyer’, of Mexican descent, as he became the first Mexican to win titles in boxing’s top division.
His height of 1.88 meters and average weight of 283 pounds seem to lose lethality when he smiles, a characteristic feature of a man who saw his dream come true by earning the championships, a goal he first set for himself as an amateur boxer, but was cut short in the 2008 Beijing Olympics when Robert Alonso and Oscar Rivas imposed on his dream of an Olympic medal.
That June night changed the life of the now former champion. Although, according to his family, Andy had always been a “calm and happy person because he could live from his favorite profession”, he was criticized by his family when his father pointed to him as the sole author of his defeat in the direct rematch against Joshua.
“He was never really focused. I would tell him to work, that he shouldn’t get that much weight because he would not do anything to Joshua. He never prepared, there was too much celebration”, admitted Ruiz Sr.
An atmosphere of flattery developed around Ruiz, which eventually led the Mexican to lose the titles in his mandatory defense. Praises from all angles made him lose his way and, as a consequence, the belts.
“I didn’t train as I should have, I gained a lot of weight and changed my mentality”, admitted Andy Ruiz Jr. with his head down after learning the results of the cards.
Ruiz has always been criticized for his physical build, so this shower of criticism of his obesity has been the driving force behind the fists that make him a star today. His Aztec ancestors’ origins forged his character as well as his upbringing in Imperial, California, a gang county 10 miles from the Mexican border.
Since his childhood, he found in the ring a definitive alternative to fight the wrong steps and the drugs around him. He made his amateur debut at the age of six and this was his first major test, as he could not find opponents of his age, and he was forced to take on older and more experienced opponents.
That child, somehow, lives inside him and comes out in every smile and the infallible ritual of eating a Snickers bar before entering the ring to fight.
He achieved an amateur record of 105-5 under the tutelage of trainer Armando Ferrer. Despite the victories, there was a steady stream of mood swings that emerged many years later in 2016, when he lost his undefeated record in a close decision against New Zealand’s Joseph Parker. Losing led him to a retirement that was interrupted in 2018, when he returned to the path of victory.
He came back like the greats and, after changing his luck, now he also lives ‘in a big way’. He has proclaimed himself a car fanatic and the monies he has earned from his championship fights have been invested in cars such as Rolls Royce, Lamborghini and Mercedes-Benz, as well as supporting his family unconditionally.
In his intimate life, Ruiz traded the traditional Burrito at Johnny’s Burritos for the most expensive restaurants anywhere in the world. He also changed the mentality of millions around the planet. Once Manny Robles, his former trainer, claimed that “nobody believed in him because of those extra kilos”, but the K.O. that changed his life, also knocked out the criticism and mockery of obese society throughout humanity.
Mendoza: “Boxers Need A Way To Survive”!
By: WBA Press
(April 14th) The paralysis of boxing because of the pandemic that is sweeping the world does not mean a deadlock for the World Boxing Association (WBA). Beyond the fact that no bouts are taking place, the organization is working at full speed and this was stated by its president, Gilberto Jesús Mendoza, in a great interview with “A la Vera del Ring” and its presenter, Andrés Moloney, through Instagram Live..
It was a very enjoyable and enriching conversation, in which they discussed some of the most important issues of the organization and boxing in general. Mendoza spoke about the work that is currently being done in the midst of the contingency.
“We have initiated a series of investigations into our regulations. Among those things we have looked into the WBA’s last 15-round fight, we have looked into the three-knockdown rule and the birth of the WBA, as well as our first champions”, said Mendoza.
One of the most controversial points at present is the creation of various titles. The WBA President referred to this in a sincere and extended way.
“People criticize titles but as it is in professional boxing no matter what you do, you’re going to have four world champions. You cannot change that. Having only one champion sounds romantic and charming and one of the best things for boxing, but the sport already took a path similar to the 1920s. When the WBA was formed under the name of the NBA, the world champion was determined by popularity, journalists and promoters”, Mendoza said.
“If you have four options, there are four chances for the fighters. There’s more opportunity to make money and that’s what a fighter dreams of. They need a way to make a living. Ten-round fights don’t pay enough. You got sports like football that have scholarships, signings, bonuses. Boxing is more anarchic. There’s a lot of criticism about the business, but organizations have to survive. The essence of those years had something important and that is that the commissions belonged to the organization. But now the commissions cannot be affiliated with an organization because of the Muhammad Ali Act”, the leader continued.
Mendoza spoke about the Interim championships and presented examples to show the importance and usefulness of their existence.
“The Interim Championships serve a purpose. Many times, when there were mandatory challengers, the champions chose to vacate their belts to avoid to comply with those fights. We have a case with Maidana, whose interim championship served him to get the fight against Mayweather. The Interim championship is about creating opportunities. We have sanctioned many that were not justified, but it is something that we have assumed responsibility for and have been correcting”, said Mendoza, who also spoke about working opportunities for WBA judges and referees who cannot work with many commissions.
The WBA is studying several options and one of them is making a closed-door boxing program, tentatively scheduled for May 2nd.
“We want to be one of the first organizations that attempts to stage a local event (Colombia) behind closed doors. We are trying to encourage local promoters to do this. I would work directly to get the right permits, to get people to take the tests and that sort of things. I do this because I believe in a world without the big fights and the important support. I think boxing is mystical, it helps a lot and we’re not going to let it down. My mission is to develop talent and if all this was created by a virus, we will be that positive virus that motivates others through boxing. All this is because of the initiative Dana White had, I won’t hide it”, said the WBA President.
Mendoza also cleared up doubts about the WBA’s plan with amateur boxing and stressed that the organization was declared an amateur and professional organization since 2016, that the work in this sense is long term and that its purpose is to help in the middle of the crisis boxing is going through in the Olympic area, besides getting the recognition of the International Olympic Committee.
The head of the pioneer organization will continue talking to the media, while he will begin a series of interviews with boxing stars through his social media. These will be announced in the next few hours.
Actions of a Referee During Legal Falls, With Luis Pabón!
By: WBA Press
(April 13th) The international referee of the World Boxing Association (WBA), Luis Pabón, explains step by step how the third man in the ring should act when a legal fall occurs.
The Puerto Rican referee explains in this video, in a pedagogical way, the procedure the referee must carry out in order to protect the health of the boxer, comply with the regulations and respect the sport.
WBA: Fundamental Aspects of a Boxing Judge!
By: WBA Press
(April 8th) The international judge of the World Boxing Association (WBA) talks about the three fundamental aspects that every judge must have when scoring a fight, and how they should apply the rules correctly.
WBA Tribute to Stanley!
(April 7th) An account of the career of our Hall of Famer and WBA Director, Stanley Christodolou. The South African has been an important man for our organization and for the history of boxing, that is why we celebrate his career as a judge and referee.
José Roberto Torres Talks
About Scoring System In the Rounds!
By: WBA Press
(April 2nd) José Roberto Torres talks about the scoring system in the rounds
As part of the educational activities of the WBA Academy, the Puerto Rican judge explains the 10-point scoring system and how it should be used depending on how the fight goes
Torres highlights all the aspects that must be taken into account when evaluating an round. Effectiveness, attack, defense, technique and sportsmanship are fundamental to implementing the five levels of the voting method.
WBA’s March Boxer of the Month!
By: WBA Press
(April 1st) The World Boxing Association (WBA) released the March rankings, and the boxer from Thailand Thammanoon Niyomtrong was named the boxer of the month, meanwhile Robert Helenius received an honorific mention.
“Knockout Freshmart”, which is how Niyomtrong is known, faced to Japan’s Norihito Tanaka on March 3, getting the win by UD in the city of Nakon Sawan. This victory was his 12th defense of the WBA minimum Super Championship to lead the weight class looking for more accomplishments in his career.
On the other hand, veteran Helenius captured the heavyweight Gold Championship when he Knocked out in four rounds to Polish Adam Kownacki at the Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn Ny, on March 7th. The Finnish of Swedish ancestry won a very important fight at the age of 36, now he is getting at the doors of a world championship fight.
Additionally, the pioneer organism also released the women’s rankings at its website. Both women’s and men’s rankings could be visited and checked in their specific sections.
Castillejo Steps Up In the Fight Against Covid-19!
By: WBA Press
(March 31st) When the situation calls for it, public figures must step forward and set an example. This is what former world champion Javier Castillejo has done, and as a Red Cross volunteer he has set out to help with the Covid-19 situation that is plaguing the world and particularly his country, Spain.
Spain has been one of the most affected countries and millions of people are living on the edge because of what is happening. However, Castillejo has taken advantage of his position to help the cause.
“I believe and think that everyone should provide some help, some in one way and some in another. I think that athletes in general should also give support”, Castillejo said.
He was entrusted with a very noble mission of helping the neediest, those who cannot go out on the streets because of their vulnerability.
“I have wanted to become a Red Cross volunteer for a long time. I had already been helping for some time and now, after being stuck at home with this problem, I believe it is time to help those elderly people who cannot go out to do their shopping. The role I’m playing right now is to go to the supermarket, buy the food they need and bring it to their homes”, the former WBA Middleweight Champion continued.
Castillejo also spoke about the situation in Spain and how it is seen from the perspective of someone who walks the streets, collaborates and has the opportunity to see first-hand everything that is happening.
“Here we are waiting for the famous peak to go down as soon as possible so that we can determine how many infected people there are and how many have been cured. The situation is difficult, it’s complicated. Many things are closed. It’s a big problem. I think that once we get through this, there will be economic problems that we must solve together”, the “Lince” and two-division champion in professional boxing admitted.
Finally, the former boxer sent a message of advice to everyone, both to those who are going through the worst of the crisis and to those who remain uncertain because the pandemic is still unfolding in their countries.
“The first thing I would say is that we should take this virus seriously because it kills. Some people get over it, but others don’t, it affects elderly people and it spreads fast and easily. The most important thing is to not leave the house. You have to wash your hands many times with soap and water. There are people who have the virus without knowing it and when they touch something after sneezing or coughing, that place harbors the virus. You have to be very careful, but what is really important is to not go outside”, Castillejo concluded.
WBA Mourns the Death of Ron Ross!
By: WBA Press
(March 27th) The World Boxing Association (WBA) mourns the recently confirmed news about Ron Ross, Boxing Writers Association of America (WBAA) member, who lost the battle against COVID 19, after being in a hospital in Florida for several days.
Ross was a recognized author, manager, trainer, and former boxer. A man who had a life completely linked to boxing from many angles. He said good-bye at the age of 87 years.
The New York native wrote many articles of great value related to boxing, and also some important books that are a legacy from a great mind who offered his knowledge to the world.
The WBA grieves his death, and sends prayers for his wife’s health, who is currently in the same hospital, also affected by the virus.
#StayAtHome Training for Referees!
By: WBA Press
(March 26th) Boxing, just as many other activities, has slowed down or stopped globally. However, this is is not a reason for the protagonists to stop improving every day. Even boxing referees can continue working, as Luis Pabón explained in a video made for the World Boxing Association (WBA), and which is part of the set of activities that the WBA Academy has been developing for months to train referees worldwide.
The referee’s work is very important in the ring. Pabón says that imagining different situations and how to proceed in some of them can help referees do their jobs better.
From their own homes and in the midst of this situation, referees can continue to practice every day for the benefit of boxing. The Puerto Rican referee is very experienced and has been in great World Championships, but he is an example that we should never stop learning and improving.
By: WBA Press
(March 24th) The World Boxing Association World Championships Committee, following instructions from the Presidency and exerting its authority to approve fights throughout the world according to the provisions of its Bylaws and other regulations and rules with special emphasis on its programs for the development and safety of boxing, applying the rules of control in coordination with its member countries and regions: Africa, Asia, Oceania, Europe, Latin America, North America and China.
In order to maintain the good relationship with all promoters, sponsors, trainers, media and boxers and due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, we are forced to take actions of all kinds and nature on the planet.
In our case, the agreements and conventions, derived with the realization of world and regional championship fights by any sport organizations, including boxing, in compliance with the rules and guidelines suggested by the World Health Organization and other competent bodies that urge the universal collective to social distancing; it is agreed to temporarily postponed the celebration of any event, until the competent authorities rule and global health circumstances indicate that the causes of contagion have ceased and order and normal daily life can be safely restored in all the world.
The World Boxing Association, together with the aforementioned persons, may reschedule the events that have been formally suspended as a result of the foregoing.