A trio of World Boxing Council Vice Presidents and two ten gallon cowboy hats on the trail of a talk which was a real belter!
Rex recalls the Youth Championship started in South Africa and the first championship bout was in Russia in 1998. A young Spanish fighter came up to him and asked: “Mr Walker if I win, can I please keep the belt?” So far nine hundred youth champions and developing and progressing from them 100 Absolute Champions, which goes to show what an invaluable investment for the future this fledgling stepping stone belt is. Perhaps the most famous winner of it was Canelo, in his late teens and so obviously destined for greatness. And Saul has retained his humility, politeness, kindness and thoughtfulness to this very day.
“One of my greatest pleasures is when a youth champion graduates into an international and then an absolute champion, says Rex.”
Houcine who leads the African Boxing Union recalls how he met Don Jose in Paris and Don Jose urged him to join the WBC. In his first year, he didn`t speak at meetings, in order to listen and learn. The most marvelous moment was meeting the Great Nelson Mandela in the 1998 WBC Convention and the wondrous 1999 Convention in Moscow, which was made so very, very memorable by Edmund Lipinski. Houcine explains that the ABU is for the best fighters in Africa. It`s a step by step stage to be recognized and an opportunity to be rated by the WBC.
For Mauro Betti his first WBC Convention was in Venice and he has not missed one of any of the thirty four then and since or any meetings. Mauro is in charge of the International Belt, which is such an important stepping stone opportunity leading towards the Absolute zenith Version. The International Championship started as an idea of Don Jose, and came to fruition in Aruba 86. It gives a progressing opportunity to boxers of quality, to be discovered. His proudest moment was Manny Pacquiao winning the International Belt and then as a World Champion still treasuring and holding it aloft.
What does Boxing mean to this trio? Rex says it`s so many friends all over the World. He loves the Sport and its people, saying: “How would a cowboy have ended up in Thailand if it hadn`t been for Boxing? Boxing means everything to me and I miss Don Jose.
Houcine says: “Boxing is the Noble Art. I`ve met many impressive people. Don Jose was my mentor and I learned such a lot from him. Wherever you go you meet fine boxing people. The Green and Gold Belt really means something. We are talking about a different level. We have Ring Officials Seminars.” He also pointed out that the leather used in the WBC Belt is also for Ferrari Cars.
Mauro said: “Boxing is the most clear sport to show respect. To respect the other guy in front of you. Boxing is giving you the atmosphere.”
Comical moments? Rex remembers in South, when a fighter got on to the scale looking rather heavy, but then his weight was going down…because his trainer was lifting him up by the britches! And on the other scale in Tijuana a minimum weight dusted the scales with a jacket on with two full water bottles in the pockets to get him… up to weight!
As moderate Moderator Victor put on a brown cowboy hat, Rex donned a white Stetson saying: “We are so pleased to do what we do in boxing and let`s just be happy we`re here.”
𝗪𝗕𝗖 𝗧𝗔𝗟𝗞𝗦 𝗥𝗢𝗨𝗡𝗗 53 "TALKING BOXING”𝗝𝗢𝗜𝗡 𝗨𝗦: https://forms.gle/gcrvufHxhzAtD6K86Monday June 08🥊Spanish Version 11:00 am CDMX / 18:00 Madrid🥊English Version 09:00 pm CDMX / 16:00 MadridWith:Mauricio SulaimánRex WalkerMauro BettiHoucine HouichiWorld Boxing CouncilUniversidad LiberQuaré#WBCStayHomeStaySafe
Posted by WBCUniversity on Monday, June 8, 2020