By Jose Sulaiman WBC President
Mayweather, Pacquiao, Nápoles and Television.
There had been several years since I had enjoyed the magnificent, excellent boxing demonstration given by Floyd Mayweather in his fight against Shane Mosley on May 1 in Las Vegas. For me, it was like the flavor of the most delicious of deserts, or a cup of the wine Chateau D’yquem after a savoring meal. I even believe that it was the very best fight ever by Mayweather, who proved to be the best pound-for-pound in the excellency of boxing, just as Manny Pacquiao, who is the only WBC Diamond Belt champion in the whole wide world and the best pound-for-pound in the field of devastating power in boxing. This unquestionable true position of both boxing idols make their confrontation in the ring mandatory, as per the expectations of the boxing fans of the five continents. Both fighters the proud WBC champions for many years – Floyd with the five authentic world-respected titles in different divisions won in the rings, and Manny a WBC champion since he was a flyweight !!
I can not leave without comment the devastating defeat by Shane Mosley, after having impacted the world with a great demonstration of boxing ability, intelligence and power in his prior fight over Antonio Margarito. He looked tired, frustrated, with no speed and power, except in the first round, showing that father time forgives no one and that at an age of almost 39 years, it would be time to think about retirement after such a great career. He was also a great WBC champion until the day that he decided to walk away.
This unfortunate experience took my mind to December 5 of 1975, the year that I was elected, for the first time, President of the WBC in Tunisia, North Africa, when I heard on the radio and later saw on TV
the sad clear loss on an eye cut TKO by the José “Mantequilla” Nápoles, one of the greatest welterweight champions that ever lived, by the punches of John Stracey from Great Britain, who became the first champion of the world of my era. Nápoles also, had had an extraordinary victory in his prior fight,
defending successfully his WBC title against Mando Muñiz. But once again Father Time came to collect his bill.
On that May 1 it was demonstrated that Mexico is today, without the slightest doubt, the second country of the world in professional boxing whose boxing fans are deep in the sport by having had about 16 million people watching boxing on open Television; almost 10 million people watched on Televisa, under the popularity of Saul Alvarez and Mayweather; some 5 million more watched on TV Azteca the crowning as WBC bantamweight king Fernando “Cochulito” Montiel, in Japan over the great falling champion Hozumi Hazegawa, with Montiel showing to the media a drawing he made in school when he was only seven years old, showing the WBC belt and winning it in Japan, which is a dream to boxers in Mexico – but what a dream! – fighting always in life and making it a reality, as an example to all the children in the world. Montiel brought the bantamweight title back to Mexico, 14 years after it was around the waist of Mexican Victor Rabanales.
Cadena Tres, a relatively new television network, had about 1.5 million TV fans on a NABF- WBC title bout and about 600,000 thousand on Friday in Multivison, which has a formidable weekly tournament of 4-6 rounders that has produced seven champions of the world !! That is, that in about eight days, 16 million Mexican TV fans watched boxing on the open screen on the four existing TV corporations that are giving full opening to boxing.
This is making the real boxing fans very proud to see that Mexican television is giving such an important place to the boxing, which without a doubt, opens the doors to many Mexicans to become the new heroes to substitute those that are gone or soon going, like Julio César Chavez, Erik Morales, Marco Antonio Barrera, José Luis Castillo, Jorge “Travieso” Arce, and the so many others.
Knowing that boxing is deep in the heart of all middle- and lower-class people of Mexico: the Foundation Ring Telmex, by Mr. Carlos Slim, represented by Arturo Elias Ayub; the Conade (the Mexican Ministery of Sports) with professor Bernardo de la Garza, and the WBC are joining efforts to organize in Mexico a national tournament of amateur boxing for men and ladies, to get thousands of amateur boxers instead of the hundreds that presently exist, and who will be in the future the boxing idols that Mexico has always had since the beginning of the 20th century.
Boxing, even being a sport of violence, is becoming an example of devoted work within the principles of peace by having continuous boxing promotions always held without one single element of violence among the people; to the contrary, to show the world that the ambiance of peace, hard and positive work is the real Mexico while the other, which has become the favorite of the media, is only 0.01 percent of the Mexican people.
I sincerely hope that the multi-millions of the good Mexicans, of government, sports, the science, the media, the industry, and the peaceful people walking the Mexican streets, would join in efforts to show the world our real Mexico, which has always been the hospitable, happy and exemplary people as our history with all nations shows.