International Boxing Day
- To promote the so-called sport of fists, with millions of fans on the planet, this August 27 celebrates the International Boxing Day, in tribute to the World Championship of that discipline held in Havana in 1974.
The event was sponsored by the International Boxing Association (Aiba), whose president, Umar Kremlev, described it as an opportunity to celebrate this fascinating universal sport together and share the love and passion for it. Boxing, said the manager, is beautiful, diverse and unifying… it is discipline, purpose, courage, spectacle, community and family.
The celebration started in 2017 in Russia, at the proposal of Kremlev, then secretary general of the federation of that country, and was recognized by the Executive Committee of the Aiba in 2019, dated July 22. Since 2021 the commemoration takes place on August 27 in remembrance of “a very special event”, according to Aiba: the first World Boxing Championship of that international organization, held in the Cuban capital 47 years ago, from August 17 to 30 ago.
Headquartered in the Sports City Coliseum, 263 athletes from 45 nations attended the tournament, which has gone down in history as one of the strongest in this sport of all time.
Specialists point to 1910 as the year boxing entered Cuba from the United States, through the Chilean John Budinich, a boxer in that northern country, who arrived in Havana to provide personal defense services. Months later the first boxing academy was created in the city, in 1912 the first fight was organized and in 1915 the first facility dedicated to the discipline, The Stadium, was inaugurated.
Cuba has given boxing relevant representatives, such as Eligio Sardiñas (1910-1988), known as Kid Chocolate, one of the best featherweights ever, and Teófilo Stevenson (1952-2012), three-time Olympic and world champion, to name just the bare minimum.
Starting in the 1960s, a Cuban Boxing School was developed on the island, which has marked relevant performances in the international arena of the Caribbean nation, powerhouse in this amateur sport, and in whose constitution a coach stands out, Alcides Sagarra. Cuba's most recent performance in boxing matches was the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, recently concluded, in which the country reached four titles: Andy Cruz (63 kg), Roniel Iglesias (69 kg), Arlén López (81 kg) and Julio César la Cruz (91 kg), as well as a bronze medal (Lázaro Álvarez, 57 kg).