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Cuba disagrees after exclusion of wrestling from Olympics

The Cuban Federation of Associated Wrestling reiterated today its disagreement with the exclusion of this sport from the 2020 Olympic Games and proposed a direct request to the OIC´s Executive Board in order for them to consider the decision.

Bellow is reproduced the full text of the message sent to Raphael Martinetti, president of the International Federation of Associated Wrestling and Francisco Eduardo Lee, president of the Pan American Council of Associated Wrestling:

On behalf of the Cuban Federation of Wrestling and its Executive as well as the Cuban Olympic Committee´s firm position, which by precept has the duty to protect their Associated Federations I make a direct request to the Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee.

The Olympic wrestling is practiced worldwide in 180 National Federations; it is accepted by the public in general and as a rule they don´t cause trauma. It is not an expensive sport, with many years of experience and history in the World Sports Movement and we consider this should be our request.

Mister President Lee, for the aforementioned purposes, we urge the OIC´s Executive Board to consider the decision taken.

Best regards

Eduardo Pérez Téllez,

President of the Cuban Wrestling Federation

In accordance with the Cuban Olympic Committee

José R. Fernández,

President of the Cuban Olympic Committee


Eight Qualified Teams reinforced for Cuban baseball Second stage

serie-nacional-de-beisbolA Sunday TV show gave the details of the selection of the baseball players who would reinforce the qualifying teams advancing to the second stage of the 52nd Cuban National Baseball Championship, in which three  members of the Guantanamo Indians were chosen.

Forty players, among them 22 pitchers and the rest to occupy the fields, were chosen for the season´s second part to start once concluded the III World Baseball Classic.

As a new rule, according to Higinio Velez, president of the Baseball Cuban Federation, no player will be excluded from the qualifying teams and the new comers´ numbers will change just in case it exists in any member´s shirt.

Some 124 elegible athletes made up the list of candidates.

The chosen recorded, in a general term, at least 119 times at bat and 20 innings for the pitchers, distributed in 5 catchers, 7 players for the remaining positions in the infield, 21 in the outfield, and 66 pitchers.

The eight teams to part take in the second stage are Sancti Spiritus, Cienfuegos, Industriales, Matanzas, Isla de la Juventud, Villa Clara, Ciego de Avila and Pinar del Rio.

Las Tunas was the team from which more players were chosen with 7, followed by Camaguey and Santiago de Cuba (6), Mayabeque and Artemisa (5), Granma (and Holguin (4) and Guantanamo (3).

The Selection was set as follows:

Sancti Spíritus chose Yadier Pedroso (pitcher for Artemisa), Giorvis Duvergel (outfielder for Guantanamo), Norge Luis Ruiz (pitcher-Camaguey), Danger Guerrero (catcher- Mayabeque) y Alexander Ayala (infielder -Camaguey).

Cienfuegos: William Luis (outfielder–Camaguey), Ernesto Molinet (infielder- Mayabeque), Lednier Ricardo (catcher –Camaguey), Yormani Socarrás (pitcher- Camaguey) y Alberto Bicet (pitcher- Santiago de Cuba).

Industriales: Carlos J. Viera (pitcher- Las Tunas), Yoelkis Cruz (pitcher-Las Tunas), Yudiel Rodríguez (pitcher-Las Tunas), Ariel Miranda (pitcher-Mayabeque), y Yoandy Fernández (pitcher-Las Tunas).

Matanzas: Alexander Rodríguez (pitcher-Guantanamo), Darién Núñez (pitcher-Las Tunas), Pablo Millán (pitcher-Holguin), Alaín Dela (pitcher-Santiago de Cuba) y Maikel Castellanos (infielder-Santiagode Cuba).

Isla de la Juventud: Alexei Bell (outfielder-Santiago de Cuba), Yordanis Samón (infielder-Granma), Yulieski González (pitcher- Artemisa), José A. García (pitcher-Artemisa) y Joan C. Pedroso (pitcher-Las Tunas).

Villa Clara: Yordan Manduley (infielder-Holguin), Edilse Silva (outfielder-Santiago de Cuba), Jonder Martínez (pitcher-Artemisa), Danel Castro (infielder-Las Tunas) y Dayron Varona (outfielder-Camaguey).

Ciego de Ávila: Danny Betancourt (pitcher-Santiago de Cuba), Leandro Martínez (pitcher-Granma), Miguel Lahera (pitcher-Artemisa), Maikel Cáceres (outfielder-Holguin) y Dainer Moreira (infielder-Guantanamo).

Pinar del Río: Alfredo Despaigne (outfilder-Granma), Leinier Rodríguez (pitcher-Mayabeque), Alaín Tamayo (pitcher- Granma), Orlando Lavandera (outfielder-Mayabeque) y Raimar Navarro (pitcher-Holguin).


Dayron Robles: a Tale of an Unfinished Olympic Career

Dayron Robles, Cuban Olimpic championDayron Robles, the so called Lord del Guaso, the Olympic champion, ex record holder in the 110 meter hurdles and champion of the Diamond League, has said good bye to his sport life.

Looking at the national and international media, which in a great per cent echoed the news, you will immediately find the prefix ex- referring to him as though he is just part of the past. Of course, this is the term given to a person that changes his condition in a given field of his life.

In sports, many stars leave their carrier with the satisfaction of his medals, titles, fame…but in this case Robles born in Guantanamo left an unfinished career in athletics just in the most important stage of his life, with only 26 years of age and maybe many other conquests ahead.

Recently the current President of athletics in Cuba Jorge Luís Sánchez Jiménez notified to the daily Juventud Rebelde the withdrawal of the Cuban star, news unofficially spread worldwide and continued saying: “The boy is not willing to continue his competitions. We tried to convince him, but he insisted and now he is not member of the Cuban team anymore.”

Disappointments, lack of attention by the Cuban Sports Institute, The continued injuries of the Cuban starhave been engine for withdrawalunheard complaints, several injuries, Arries Merrit breaking his record last September (12, 80), disqualifications, the withdrawal of his coach Santiago Antunez, best in the world in the 100 hurdles…and many other reasons may be involved in the cold notice made by the Cuban sports leader, reasons that now wander in the minds of all Cubans who feel the emptiness left by the island´s best hurdler, who  left a brilliant carrier, worthy to be considered and difficult to summarize:

Dayron Robles Since early age, he registered significant marks in youth events. He was second in the 60 m hurdles in Moscow, and broke the record of Chinese Liu Xian (12, 86) with his 12, 87. He got the best mark of the season (13, 07) in Holland, 2011. That year, in Ostrava, Czech Republic, he won ahead of Jamaican Dwight Thomas (13.24) y el American Terrence Trammell (13.30), Sydney 2000 y Athens 2004 Olympic runner-up  and won Thomas again at the Switzerland Diamond League. He is Beijing 2008 Olympic champion and champion in Pan-American Games. He has also been the best in athletics meetings held in Stuttgart, Turin, Stocolm, Bormingham, Doha …

That brilliant career was just frustrated all of a sudden. The real motives that led the extraordinary athlete to quit are still in the obscure and only the eye and ear witnesses know the true story.

For the moment, our Lord of Guaso, our Olympic Dayron Robles is part of the past, maybe for some sport authorities, but is part of the present for millions of Cubans who jumped from our chairs after every victory, but grieved when an injury, disqualifications, unanswered questions become the engine to take away from the track a unique and International figure.

May this be understood as a red light to check the strategies designed by the Cuban island´s sports authorities regarding athletes, because if we lost a star, we would lose many others, which will never be recovered. A genuine talent is not found at any corner.


A Guantanamo Pitcher to the World Baseball Classic

guanteThe Guantanamo pitcher Alexander Rodriguez Matos was selected among the 28 baseball players to partake at the third World Baseball Classic.

This is the first time that Rodriguez, from the municipality of Baracoa, is part of the Cuban team and this was possible thanks to its effectiveness as closing pitcher in the Guantanamo Indians.

During the current National Baseball Series the right hander has the same number of won and saved games.

This is also the first time that a Guantanamo baseball player becomes part of a team to the World Baseball Classic.

The Cuban team also includes catchers Eriel Sanchez, Frank Camilo Morejon and Yulieski la Rosa

In the infield figure Lourdes Gourriel, José Dariel Abreu, José Miguel Fernández, Erisbel Arruebarruena, Andy Ibañez y Luis Felipe Rivera.

Also the outfilders   Frederich Cepeda, Alfredo Despaigne, Guillermo Heredia, Alexei Bell, Yadiel Hernández y Rusney Castillo are included in a team managed by Coach Victor Mesa.

The pitchers staff is completed by Ismel Jiménez, Vladimir García, Odrisamen Despaigne, Vichyohandri Odelín, Danny Betancourt, Yander Guevara y Raicel Iglesias y los zurdos Norberto González, Wilber Pérez, Darien Nuñez y Yulieski González.

Along with Mesa will work the experienced Jorge Fuentes, while Primitivo Díaz y Ángel Castillo will be the coaches, and Pedro José Rodriguez as batting coach along with Ramon Riscart.

Cuba will play at the qualifying round in the city of Fukuoka, Japon where thy will debut on March 2, against the Brazilian team.

In this key also figure the Republic of China and Japan.


Guantanamo players outstand in baseball season

Giorbis Duvergel, the best Cuban outfilder Giorbis Duvergel, member of the Guantanamo Indians partaking at the 52nd Baseball National Series, is first among the outfielders with 421 average and continues to be, in many people´s opinion, the best of the Cuban baseball.

The left hander, 34 and 14 seasons, is an important element for the victory of his team, which now is 8th with 12 wins and the same number of defeats.

Yoeni Southeran, although lacking in offensive, stands out at the first base with no errors in 1 988 throws, which places him as the best defensive athlete in the history of the national series.

In this position also Ramon Lunar from Villa Clara stands out with 365 average and 17 runs driven.

So far 193 games have been played in this season representing 54 percent of the first stage in which eight teams would qualify for the following round.

Guantanamo needs to improve its offensive and closing pitching in order to advance to the other stage.

The Indians have been facing problems due to the absence of two of its stars, the right hander Dalier Hinojosa and the outfilder Goirbis Duvergel.

They still have possibilities to qualify, that´s why this second half is determining to fight for a ticket to the following round in the current baseball season.

After a break for the New Year celebrations the season continues tomorrow and Guantanamo faces the western province of Mayabeque.




idol of cuban boxing died at 45

Arnaldo Mesa, Cuban olympic medalistCuba lost an idol. Arnaldo Mesa, former Boxer and runer-up at Athens 1996 Olympic Games and three-time World Bronze medalist, died in the province of Holguin due to a brain hemorrhage.

Doctor Lazara Suarez, at the intensive care unit in the Vladimir Ilich Lenin Hospital told that Mesa had come to hospital with high blood pressure, leading him to him into severe cerebral damage.

He was born on December 6, 1967 in the Holguin municipality of Frank Pais and still an adolescent he made his way as a boxer up to reaching the most important events of the sport world. He stood out by his technique and evasive boxing style.

He won four national titles in local tournaments and five in international championships held in Cuba.

Just before turning 19 years old, Mesa made his debut at world boxing matches by as he represented Cuba at Reno 86, where he garnered the bronze.

He repeated this performance in the 57 kilo category at Moscow 89 and at Sydney 2001 Olympics. But his most renowned victory took place in 1996, when he got the silver after he was defeated in the Olympic finals by Hungarian Istvan Kovacs 14-7, in the 54-kilo division, not a usual category for Mesa.

Arnaldo is considered one of the most outstanding boxers from Holguin and a symbol of the Cuban boxing school.

A funeral service for Mesa takes place in his hometown, in Holguin.


Guantanamo boxers at playa giron tournament

The Guantanamo boxing team partakes at the Playa Giron National Tournament scheduled for December 16 to 23 in the Cuban province of Sancti Spitirus.

Marcos Forestal, national champion in the 56 kg (right).

Marcos Forestal, national champion in the 56 kg (rigth).

Twenty boxers make up the group headed by the national champion Marcos Forestal 56 kg, and followed by Yunier Echavarria 45 kg and Yoelkis Labañino 69 kg.

According to Diosmel Ramirez, specialist of the sport at the Provincial Boxing Academy, other two athletes, members of the national team are added to the staff of 20 boxers representing the territory at the event. These are the world champion Erislandis Savon + 91 kg and Ivan Oñate 60kg, all under the instructions of Coach Rafael Ramirez Elias.

Ramirez also said that preparation has been carried out with the aim of maintaining Guantanamo as one of the best in the country.

Guantanamo was first during the qualifying stage of the preliminary round for the eastern provinces at the Boxing National Championship and finished second at the finals.

Guantanamo boxers will try to place the province among the first four teams in an event attended by the 15 Cuban provinces and the special municipality Isla de la Juventud.