Rolando Romero’s journey to the WBA Interim title opportunity has been a difficult one. The American of Cuban origin has overcome obstacles and only destiny, combined with his efforts, has allowed him to ascend to where he is today.
He will fight the tough Dominican Jackson Mariñez this Saturday at the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Connecticut, a dream achieved after a series of events that have taken place even before his birth.
Romero, who is undefeated in 11 professional fights, spoke to Fansided.com about his life, his father’s efforts in Cuba to reach the United States, and all the times he has gotten up despite difficult moments.
His father, Rolando Romero Sr., was a boxer and won the National Title in Cuba three times. However, his intention to become a professional boxer was blocked by the political situation in his country and, in 1991, he tried to escape the island, but his plan failed.
“My father first tried to escape when he was 27. He was arrested and put in prison for two years. He was fed only one spoonful of rice, and in the evenings, a glass of water with sugar. He was fed like that for a whole month and spent two years in prison”, Romero told Fansided.
Romero inherited his persistence and constancy from his father, who is now his trainer. Those two years in prison served his father as motivation to swim out to Guantanamo Bay in 1993, and although a close friend who was accompanying him drowned, he was able to reach it and finally be transferred to Miami.
If it were not for that fact, “Rolly”, who was born two years later (1995) on American soil, wouldn’t have reached the position he finds himself in today.
Although the first sport he practiced was judo, Romero says he was inspired to box by a desire to go to the Olympics and reconquer an old lost love, something he never achieved, but his love for Boxing remained, along with the career he has embarked on since 2016.
The 24-year-old fighter also relates, albeit half-heartedly, a complicated moment in his life in 2017, in which he claims that the words of Floyd Mayweather Jr., his promoter, saved his life. Although he didn’t give many details, he promised to have that conversation with Floyd -who doesn’t know what happened either- if he wins the black and gold belt.
“Floyd saved my life in 2017. It’s not the right time for me to stop. It’s just one thing that changed my life completely”, said Romero.