Skip to comments.Castro: Cuba may skip boxing meet due to defections
Posted on 08/08/2007 10:41:44 AM PDT by The Bronze Titan
HAVANA (Reuters) - Cuba is considering pulling out of the amateur World Boxing Championships in Chicago in October to avoid new defections by its boxers, Cuban leader Fidel Castro said on Wednesday.
"Imagine all the sharks of the Mafia wanting fresh meat," the convalescing 80-year-old Castro wrote in a column published on the front page of the Communist Party newspaper Granma.
"I must tell them: we are not keen on delivering it to their doorstep," Castro said, commenting on an attempt by German boxing promoters to hire two of Cuba's top fighters during the Pan-American Games in Brazil last month.
Guillermo Rigondeaux, two-time bantamweight Olympic champion, and amateur welterweight world champion Erislandy Lara, who was captain of the Cuban boxing team, disappeared during the games in Rio de Janeiro.
They were arrested by Brazilian police last week carousing at a beach resort outside the city for not having travel documents and deported back to Cuba during the weekend.
Castro, who has not appeared in public since he underwent life-threatening intestinal surgery a year ago, said Cuban authorities are considering whether to change the roster of boxers who will compete in Chicago or not send a team at all.
For years, some of Cuba's top baseball players -- such as Jose Contreras and Orlando "El Duque" Hernandez -- have defected to the United States, drawn by million-dollar deals in the major leagues. More recently, Cuba's legendary boxing talent has been hit by defections.
In December, Olympic boxing champions Yan Barthelemy, Yuriolkis Gamboa and Odlanier Solis deserted while training in Caracas for the Panam Games.
They are now boxing professionally in Europe, where they signed contracts with the German company Arena Box Promotions.
Castro had said Rigondeaux and Lara would not be arrested on their return to Cuba but on Wednesday suggested they would never again compete for Cuba after abandoning their team in Rio de Janeiro.
He quoted Brazilian press reports that said the two boxers were found at the beach resort in the company of prostitutes apparently provided by representatives of the German promoter.
"They have reached a point of no return as members of a Cuban boxing team," Castro wrote. "An athlete who abandons his team is like a soldier who abandons his fellow troops in the middle of combat," he said.
-"Imagine all the sharks of the Mafia wanting fresh meat," the convalescing 80-year-old Castro wrote in a column published on the front page of the Communist Party newspaper Granma.
YES INDEED! Imangine that - he is now showing the world that Cubans are HIS 'slaves', and nd they are from HIS PLANTATION! - HOW DARE anyone try to PURCHASE HIS SLAVES!
Jesse, where are youuuu??????
They must not have seen the Michael Moore film/sarc
But, But, Cuba is a paradise! Just ask Micky Moore and the gang.
Another newspaper is commenting that poor ol’ Fidel is on life support, unconscious, and they’re about to pull the plug. This naturally leads me to believe that if so, these articles are just the temp gov’t line.
If Cuba is so damn great, Michael Moore-on, how come everybody wants to get the hell outta there???????...................
Cuba’s most famed amateur Stephenson won three golds in various Olympic games for Cuba. But he outclassed his amateur opponents because they were younger, less experienced, and would have turned pro if they had won their first bronze. Stephenson would have been a solid heavyweight in the pro ranks but just how good we’ll never know thanks to Castro’s socialism.
Well, that’s odd. The MSM keeps telling me how much the Cubans love Fidel, communism, and the Cuban “health-care” system. So why would pampered athletes want to defect?
Defections? Who would want to defect from Cuba’s high literacy, low infant mortality, and free health care?
It’s obvious you people have no idea what you are talking about. Every day thousands of people pour into Miami looking to buy, or build from scraps, boats that will take them to the Paradise of Cuba.
Castro is just afraid that if the Cuban boxers show up, that many Americans will try to smuggle themselves onto the Cuban plane back home.
For shame to suggest otherwise!
Mickey Moore—I like that.
Who’s the leader of the left that wants some tyranny?
Could be a good song parody there...
God willing, one day in the not too distant future, Cuba will be free again and there will be no need to defect. The Cuban people will innovate and build a prosperous economy on their own without the suffocating weight of communism around their necks.
I just read Castro was moribund, what’s he doing writing columns? Is he being channeled?