Alfredo Marcano was the third Venezuelan World Champion of the WBA

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Alfredo Marcano was the third Venezuelan World Champion of the WBA
Alfredo Marcano was the third Venezuelan World Champion of the WBA. Photo: El Nacional

Four years before, a dreadful earthquake had occurred in Caracas. This time, the seismic shock was in boxing. When he was having trouble in a difficult ninth round, Alfredo Marcano turned the fight with an impressive and agonic right upper, that knocked face down the seasoned Super Featherweight of the WBA, Hiroshi Kobayashi. Seconds before, Japanese referee Yusaku Yoshida had given the Venezuelan a protection count, who endured the punishment without falling, against the ropes. Yoshida´s unusual measure seemed to give the native of Cumaná the needed energy to throw and deliver the saving blow.

It was the 29th of July, 1971 in the hot city of Aomori. They were fighting in a 40C degree (104F) temperature, without taking into consideration the heat from the reflectors on the ring. The had fought a heated fight. Marcano, the Venezuelan, had won rounds 1 and 6 unanimously in the score cards of the three Japanese judges. At the time of the technical knock-out he was losing by a very thin margin on the official tabs. But by the ninth round, Kobayasi, the Japanese champion had gone on an all-out attack and put the daring Marcano in trouble. The Japanese was saved by the bell in the ninth round, but in the tenth Alfredo fought for his life and beat up Hiroshi, knocking him down twice before the corner threw the towel.

The native of Cumaná thus became the third Venezuelan to achieve a World Crown (all endorsed by the WBA). The prior were from Carlos “Morocho” Hernandez on January 18, 1965 Super Lightweight and Vicente Paul Rondon, Semi Heayweight Champion. They both won at the Nuevo Circo de Caracas.

Alfredo Marcano retired young at 28 years of age. He was of those fighters called “gitanos” (Gypsy). He could impress as a phenomenon in some fights and as beginner in others. His final record, 43 wins, 28 KO´s 12 loses and 5 draws do not reflect justly his great fighter quality. We know many fans of that era who consider him the best Venezuelan fighter of all time. He would have turned 70 this year on January 17. Forty six years after his great triumph in Japan,, we remember the great Alfredo Marcano, Super Featherweight World Champion of the WBA.


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