The Giraldo Cordova Cardin Memorial Tournament came to an end today in the Cuban capital Havana where the host nation's boxers ensured a clean sweep by taking all ten weight gold medals to the delight of the local fans. With the boxing event at the London 2012 Olympic Games to start in exactly 50 days time, this was a real message of intent by this frighteningly good boxing nation.
20-year-old AIBA Youth World Championships bronze medallist Yosvany Veitia, who failed to qualify for the 2010 Singapore Youth Olympic Games but qualified for the Olympic Games at the World Championships in Baku, has been in sensational form this season, claiming several gold medals in various international tournaments. The Cuban Light Flyweight No.1 consolidated his status as one of the Olympic gold medals favourites after triumphing over Kazakhstan's Mardan Berikbayev 11:7 in the final in Havana.
Super talented Youth Olympic Games winner Robeisy Ramirez, who has already 40 contests under his belt at the elite level despite the fact he will only be celebrating his 19th birthday later this year, took home the Flyweight title on his home turf. The fleet footed southpaw was too strong against the inexperienced Victor Aguilar and his polished display can only bode well when he takes to the ring this summer in London on the biggest stage of all.
In the Bantamweight class, an explosive battle was served up by two top talented local fighters, 19-year-old Youth National Champion Pablo Vicente and AIBA Youth World Championships silver medallist Norlan Yera. Vicente, who struggled to contain his opponent in the opening exchanges, quickly found his range before dictating the closing minutes to record a hard-earned victory and the Giraldo Cordova Cardin Tournament title.
AIBA World Championships and Panamerican Games silver medallist Yasnier Toledo had only lost once in 2012 and his victory in the tournament final came as no a surprise. The Cuban star came out on top in a closely fought contest with Kazakhstan's National Championships bronze medallist Askhat Zhenisbekov to claim the Lightweight gold medal.
Former AIBA World Champion Roniel Iglesias, who was also bronze medallist at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, is fully focused on being top of the podium in London. The virtuoso fighter's speed was absolutely world class in the final in Havana, keeping up the high intensity throughout the bout to overwhelm Sweden's London Olympian Anthony Yigit by large margin of points to take the Light Welterweight title.
The final of the Welterweight division between Grand Prix Usti nad Labem Tournament winner veteran Arisnoide Despaigne and Cuban National Championships bronze medallist Adrian Lescay was a real spectacle for the local crowds out in force in Havana. 30-year-old Despaigne's skills and experiences were enough to beat his younger rival 19:15 in a thrilling battle of two top drawer fighters.
22-year-old Middleweight National Champion Ramon Luis showcased sublime technique that demonstrated his meteoric rise to the upper echelons of the boxing landscape in his final contest. The lightening quick Luis overpowered Youth Olympic Games winner Irosvany Duvergel in a scintillating performance.
Cuba's team captain and current AIBA World Champion, 23-year-old Julio Cesar De La Cruz continues to wow crowds every time he takes to the ring and once again delighted fans with a boxing clinic in the Light Heavyweight final on his home turf. The 22-year-old star was too strong for his younger teammate Yaikel Kindelan as he racked up another tournament victory before the London 2012 Olympic Games.
AIBA World Championships bronze medallist hard-man Jose Angel Larduet recorded an excellent victory over his compatriot, Youth Olympic Games winner Leinier Perot in one of the most anticipated final fights in Havana. The final verdict in their Heavyweight encounter was 27:18 for London Olympian Larduet.
Erislandy Savon, Cuba's former AIBA Youth World Champion and London Olympian, has got boxing in his DNA with three-time Olympic Champion Felix Savon as his uncle, and in the Super Heavyweight final, the 22-year-old showed just why he will be one of the star's of this summer's Olympic Games. He was irrepressible against Panamerican Youth Champion Yuniel Castro as he claimed gold with victory by a large margin of points.
The world will be eagerly awaiting the Cuban squad when it lands in London for the Olympic Games with many of them destined for glory. Only 50 days to go now until the show gets underway.
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