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Cuba offers assistance in boxing development


Published: Jun 15, 2013

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The boxing hierarchy in the Republic of Cuba awaits the go-ahead to send in a training team to help with the development of the sport in The Bahamas. It’s a great opportunity for the national boxing program, inclusive of the Amateur Boxing Federation of The Bahamas (ABFB) and the Bahamas Boxing Commission (BBC).

Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, Dr. Daniel Johnson, has emphasized his intention to bring in expertise where needed to help bolster the national sports program. For boxing here, a Cuban influence would be ideal.

The Bahamas has had success sparingly across the board in boxing (amateur and professional). In recent times, several boxers have been provided scholarships to train in Cuba and the results have been quite good.

A bigger step is advocated. The idea is to network an ongoing relationship with Cuban boxing officials to secure the presence of a trainer for different periods. Training sessions would be conducted for all boxers. The Cuban/Bahamas Boxing Program will also include officiating.

The anchorperson for the proposed connection is Cuban Ambassador Ernesto Soberon Guzman. He has actually put in place the framework for the relationship and the stage is set.

For its part, the Government of The Bahamas, through the Ministry of Sports has refurbished the Flamingo Gardens Community Center Complex to house headquarters for the BCC and a gym. It is expected that the facility will be the location for training and seminars conducted by Cuban boxing representatives.

Ambassador Guzman is determined to bring about an expanded cooperation in sports between The Bahamas and Cuba, during his tenure in office here. Like others before him, he recognizes that sports can bring the nations closer and inspire higher levels of Caribbean success.

The national boxing programs in India, and several countries in Africa have advanced because of the decision to bring in Cuban trainers. I recall the Commonwealth Boxing Championships of 2005 in Scotland. The Indian team was overpowering and dominated the event under the guidance of Cuban trainers.

The Bahamas can reap rewards in boxing never experienced before if the Bahamas/Cuba boxing connection is solidified officially. Ambassador Guzman has made the commitment. The matter is now in our corner of the ring.

There is a way to incorporate the boxing program, assisted by Cuba, into the National Sports Academy. If this happens, quality young boxers will be developed in abundance.

It think this opportunity is too good to miss.

Ambassador Guzman is to be congratulated for helping to direct the Bahamian boxing program in the right direction.


• To respond to this column, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at sturrup1504@gmail.com.




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