Cuba dominate Central American & Caribbean Games

December 2nd, 2014 / All

The Central American & Caribbean Games has now finished, and the watching audience in Veracruz, Mexico saw a Cuban masterclass as the decorated boxing nation won nine gold medals.

Elsewhere, Dominican Republic was able to win two golds, while Colombia and Puerto Rico also achieved a top position in the event.

Bout of the day
Robeisy Ramirez has been a member of Cuba’s national squad since he was 17, and was the youngest boxing gold medal winner in the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Since then he has moved up to the Bantamweight class (56 kg), and following some unexpected losses he returned to top form in the Central American & Caribbean Games.

The 21-year-old eliminated Mexico’s Sergio Chirino in the semi-final stage of the Games, and following that success he had to meet with Dominican Republic’s Hector Luis Garcia in the final.

Cuba’s boxer opened the bout with quick attacks and took the lead very quickly, but his Dominican opponent fought back well and never gave up.

Garcia had a great last round with more effective punches, but the early work of Ramirez was enough to win a very entertaining bout.

Team of the day
The Cuban boxers bagged nine gold medals in the Central American & Caribbean Games, where only their Light Flyweight class (49 kg) athlete Santiago Amador could not achieve the top position.

London 2012 Olympian and WSB star Yosbany Veitia Soto began their winning series when he was too strong for Colombia’s Ceiber David Avila at the Flyweight class (52 kg).

Robeisy Ramirez won their second gold medal, while two-time AIBA World Champion Lazaro Alvarez continued the winning path at the Lightweight class (60 kg) where he was too strong for Mexico’s Lindolfo Delgado.

AIBA World Boxing Championships silver medallist Yasnier Toledo Lopez had to be at his very best to beat Puerto Rico’s strong favourite Danielito Zorrilla, while London 2012 Olympic Champion Roniel Iglesias displayed top quality boxing once again as he defeated Bahamas’ best boxer Carl Heild in the final of the Welterweight class (69 kg).

WSB Team Champion and former AIBA Junior World Champion 21-year-old Arlen Lopez won all of the rounds against Mexico’s new face Misael Rodriguez and won the gold medal at the Middleweight class (75 kg), while two-time AIBA World Champion Julio Cesar De La Cruz had some scary moments in the opening round against Colombia’s Juan Carlos Carrillo, but he was able to enter into a new level and secured their seventh gold medal.

Erislandy Savon knocked down Venezuela’s Alfonso Flores and dominated all of the rounds in the Heavyweight class (91 kg) final, while Mexico’s 19-year-old Edgar Alberto Ramirez had a great fighting spirit against Yoandi Toirac in the final of the Super Heavyweight class (+91 kg), but his technical Cuban rival won the last bout of the Games.

Surprise of the day
Colombia’s Ingrid Valencia claimed the gold medal at the South American Games in Santiago de Chile in March, but she was not the favourite against Mexico’s Sulem Urbina in the Flyweight class (51 kg) final.

Valencia was very clever with her tactics however, and her hand was raised after the final bell.

One to watch
Dominican Republic’s Leonel De Los Santos claimed a silver medal at the 2013 AMBC American Continental Championships in Santiago de Chile, and the Dominican Light Flyweight class (49 kg) boxer controlled all of the rounds against Colombia’s AMBC American Continental Championships bronze medallist Yubergen Martinez to win his nation’s second gold in the Games.

Stat/Fact of the day
The 22nd edition of the Games was the first to include women’s boxing.

Among the developing nations of the region, Bahamas, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Trinidad & Tobago all achieved at least one medal in the Games, and the 23rd edition of the Central American & Caribbean Games will be held in Barranquilla, Colombia.

Winners in Veracruz
Women’s 51 kg: Ingrid Valencia, Colombia
Women’s 60 kg: Kiria Tapia, Puerto Rico
Women’s 75 kg: Yenebier Guillen, Dominican Republic
Men’s 49 kg : Leonel De Los Santos, Dominican Republic
Men’s 52 kg: Yosbany Veitia, Cuba
Men’s 56 kg: Robeisy Ramirez, Cuba
Men’s 60 kg: Lazaro Alvarez, Cuba
Men’s 64 kg: Yasnier Toledo, Cuba
Men’s 69 kg: Roniel Iglesias, Cuba
Men’s 75 kg: Arlen Lopez, Cuba
Men’s 81 kg: Julio Cesar De La Cruz, Cuba
Men’s 91 kg: Erislandy Savon, Cuba
Men’s +91 kg: Yoandi Toirac, Cuba