Venezuela join the battle for WSB glory

The South American country will have a WSB team in Season V of the World Series of Boxing

The year was 1968. Martin Luther King’s voice faded forever, the streets of Paris boiled in protest and the US Army left its mark in My Lai. In that same year, in the Mexico City Olympic Games, the Polish referee Boleslaw Idziak raised the left hand of a boxer from Cumaná, Francisco Rodríguez. Light flyweight “Morochito” had just become the first Olympic gold medalist in Venezuela’s history.

Forty six years later, twelve more medals followed: one gold, two silver and eight bronze. Out of these thirteen medals, five were claimed by boxers. “Morochito”’s gold, the silvers of Piñango in Moscow 1980 and of Gamarro in Montreal 1976, and the bronze medals of Bolívar and Catarí in Los Ángeles 1984. These figures speak for themselves about the importance of the sport of boxing in Venezuelan society in the last century. Venezuela, the same as other countries in Latin America such as Cuba or Mexico, has consolidated a boxing tradition within the reach of very few nations and these traditions will be enjoyed by fans of the World Series of Boxing (WSB) in Season V thanks to the inclusion of the new Franchise based in the country.

The boxers of the future Venezuelan team have not been confirmed yet. However, a few boxers from this country have stepped onto the canvas in previous seasons of WSB, as is the case of Luis Martín Arcón Díaz, from Guarica, who defended the colours of the USA Knockouts on three occasions last season, only being defeated by the Cuban champion Lázaro “el Príncipe” (the Prince) Álvarez. Lightweight Arcón Díaz is currently ranked 6th in the AIBA World Rankings. Another possible bet of the new franchise could be Gabriel Maestre, who lost his own WSB bout in three participations in Season IV against Olympic Champion Roniel Iglesias Sotolongo.

Another Venezuelan boxer active during Season IV was Middleweight Enry Saavedra Pinto, who lost his only bout with the Guerreros against the Pole Tomasz Jablonski. Light Flyweight Ronald Chacón and Light Welterweight Samuel José Zapata, registered in the German Franchise last season without entering the ring, could be part of the new team. WSB fans could enjoy Héctor Manzanilla in Season I, and Juan Carlos Rodríguez and José David Payares, in Seasons I and III.

The team managers and coaches of Venezuela have a wide range of possibilities to tailor a highly competitive squad to prove in WSB Season V that their Boxing tradition is at the cutting edge of the best boxers in the planet.