Reigning AIBA World Champion, Beijing Olympic Games bronze medallist and Pan-American Championships gold medallist Roniel Iglesias is Cuba's biggest hope in Baku.
The light welterweight superstar is only 23-year-old but has been involved in the National Elite Team since 2005 when he won his first gold medal at the Playa Giron. Iglesias is unbeaten since February 2010 when he lost to France's Samir Machrouh at the Bocskai Memorial Tournament by a close 2:1.
Cuba, one of the globe's leading boxing nation, claimed four medals at the last edition of the AIBA World Championships in Milan two years ago. In addition to Iglesias' gold medal, Osmay Acosta secured a silver in the heavyweight division while Yankiel Leon and young Jose Angel Larduet took the bronze.
The actual Cuban squad is very young with new talents on board. But they are talented enough to keep the country at a top place in the World of Boxing. Eight of the selected boxers will participate in the upcoming Pan-American Games in Guadalajara, right after the biggest boxing event ever in Baku.
AIBA Youth World Championships bronze medallist, 19-year-old Yosvany Veitia won his first National Elite title this year by defeating his top local rival, AIBA World Championships quarter-finalist, Daniel Matellon, and therefore was added to the team.
Youth Olympic Games winner and reigning AIBA Youth World Champion, Robeisy Ramirez will celebrate his 18th birthday only later this year. But he already competed in more than 100 bouts and might be Cuba's secret weapon.
Former AIBA Cadet World Championships silver medallist and Pan-American Games Qualifying Tournament winner, 20-year-old Lazaro Alvarez got involved into the national elite team this year and won a few international tournaments. Cuban coaches are expecting at least a bronze medal from him.
Yasnier Toledo, Pan-American Champion, competed in the last AIBA World Championships and is considered as one of the biggest lightweight's medal contenders. In the welterweight division, Beijing Olympic Games silver medallist, Carlos Banteur is the best Cuban but had several defeats at the international level since 2008.
AIBA World Championships bronze medallist, 26-year-old Emilio Correa won a silver medal at the Beijing Olympic Games and now waits for his first gold medal in Baku. The tough middleweight fighter dominated the Bocskai Memorial Tournament, the Bolivarian Alternative Games, Pan-American Games Qualifier and the Giraldo Cordova Cardin Tournament this year.
Cuba's team captain is Julio Cesar De La Cruz who failed to qualify for the last Olympic Games forced his country to send only ten boxers to Beijing. Now that the 22-year-old Caribbean has developed his skills, he has enough experience to reach at least a bronze medal.
Former AIBA Youth World Champion, Jose Angel Larduet found his place back in the national squad. Therefore Youth Olympic Games winner, Leinier Perot will miss the event. Larduet not only won the selection event but other top tournaments as well. That is why he is considered as one of the heavyweight's top favourites.
Three-time Olympic Champion, Felix Savon's nephew and former AIBA Youth World Champion, 21-year-old Erislandy Savon will also be part of the team and will fight in the super heavyweight class in Baku. Erislandy triumphed in tough European events in 2011 such as at the Bocskai Memorial Tournament and the Strandja.
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