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Vicente Samuel Saldívar García (May 3, 1943 – July 18, 1985) was a Mexican boxer.[3] He was a former WBC and a two-time WBA Featherweight Champion.[4] Saldivar has frequently been ranked amongst the greatest in the history of that division by many noted boxing historians and critics.[5] He currently holds the record for the most wins in unified featherweight title bouts and the longest unified featherweight championship reign in boxing history at 8 title bouts and 7 title defenses respectively. Saldívar fought in front of the fourth largest crowd ever, 90,000 in Estadio Azteca, and has also regularly been cited as one of the finest left-handed fighters of all time.[6]

Vicente Saldívar
Vicente Saldivar 1965.jpg
Saldivar after the bout with Raul Rojas in 1965
Statistics
Real nameVicente Samuel Saldívar García
Nickname(s)Zurdo de Oro
Weight(s)Featherweight
Super featherweight
Lightweight
Height1.62 m (5 ft 4 in)
Reach1.70 m (67 in)
NationalityMexican
Born(1943-03-05)March 5, 1943
Mexico City, Mexico[1]
DiedJuly 18, 1985(1985-07-18) (aged 42)
StanceSouthpaw[2]
Boxing record
Total fights40
Wins37
Wins by KO26
Losses3
Draws0
No contests0

ChildhoodEdit

Saldívar was born in one of the many poor quarters of Mexico City and is one of seven children. He used to get in fights on the streets and in school, so his father decided to channel the misguided energy into boxing.[7] Like many other Mexicans his father was a big boxing fan, so it was a logical move. He was taught by Jose Moreno,[8] a veteran trainer of a nearby Mexico City boxing gym.[9]

Fighting styleEdit

As a southpaw, Saldívar was a dynamic fighter in the ring. He could box or brawl, and often softened opponents with a brutal body attack. Among his greatest assets was his stamina; he scored seven knockouts after the 7th round. Saldívar had an unusually slow heart and pulse rate, which he claimed was the secret of the phenomenal pace he was able to maintain in the ring.[10][11]

Amateur careerEdit

Saldívar had a successful amateur career, crowned with a Mexican Golden Gloves title at bantamweight. At seventeen years old, he was included into the 1960 Olympic team, but was eliminated in the first bout by Ernst Chervet.[1][12]

Professional careerEdit

Saldívar turned professional in 1961 and won the Mexican featherweight title with a second-round knockout of Juan Ramírez on February 8, 1964. His first major victory came on June 1 of that same year when he defeated future lightweight champion and hall of fame member Ismael Laguna. Before challenging for a world title, he accumulated a record of 25–1, with his sole loss coming via a contested disqualification, which he later avenged by knock out.

WBC and WBA Featherweight ChampionshipsEdit

On September 26, 1964, Saldívar won the WBA and WBC Featherweight titles by upsetting fellow Mexican fighter and future hall of famer Sugar Ramos with an 11th-round knockout in an extremely bloody battle. His first reign as champion would last three years, in which Saldívar made eight successful title defenses. The reign was highlighted by his trilogy with Howard Winstone.[13]

In his first title defense, he defeated future champion Raul Rojas. On September 7, 1965, he defeated Winstone in their first meeting with a 15-round decision . Following that victory, he defeated Floyd Robertson by second round knock out. He then defeated Mitsunori Seki in two consecutive bouts. On June 15, 1967, Saldívar defeated Winston once again by a 15-round decision. In 1996, Ring magazine included their second meeting on their list of the 100 greatest title fights of all-time.[14] In the final installment of their trilogy, he defeated Winston by 12th round knock out.[15] Saldivar announced his retirement after that contest in October 1967. Three months later, Winstone won recognition as WBC featherweight champion, claiming the belt left vacant by Saldivar, by defeating Mitsunori Seki with a 9th-round stoppage due to a cut right eye.

Return to the ringEdit

After 21 months of inactivity, Saldívar returned to the ring on July 18, 1969 and won a 10-round unanimous decision over another former as well as future Featherweight champion, José Legra. Then on May 9, 1970, he regained the featherweight title with a 15-round unanimous decision over Johnny Famechon. This reign, however, was short-lived. Saldívar lost the crown seven months later in his first defense against Kuniaki Shibata.

Retirement and comebackEdit

He would fight once more before retiring again in 1971, however, the lure of the ring was too strong. He returned at the age of 30 after 2 years and 3 months of inactivity for another title attempt on October 21, 1973. His opponent was fellow Hall of Famer and former bantamweight champion Éder Jofre. Jofre, who was 37, had won the Featherweight crown after coming out of his own retirement (albeit a brief 7 month one). Saldívar's skills had greatly diminished and Jofre won the contest with a fourth-round knockout in Brazil. After the fight, Saldívar retired for good.[16][17]

Professional recordEdit

37 Wins (26 knockouts, 11 decisions), 3 Losses, 0 Draws
Res. Record Opponent Type Round Date Location Notes
Loss 37–3   Eder Jofre KO 4 (15) 1973-10-21   Salvador, Bahia, Brazil For WBC World featherweight title
Win 37–2   Frankie Crawford UD 10 1971-07-15   Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States
Loss 36–2   Kuniaki Shibata RTD 12 (15) 1970-12-11   Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico Lost WBC & lineal featherweight titles
Win 36–1   Johnny Famechon UD 15 1970-05-09   Palazzetto dello Sport, Rome, Lazio, Italy Won WBC & lineal featherweight titles
Win 35–1   José Legra UD 10 1969-07-18   Forum, Inglewood, California, United States
Win 34–1   Howard Winstone TKO 12 (15) 1967-10-14   Estadio Azteca, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico Retained WBC, WBA & lineal featherweight titles
Win 33–1   Howard Winstone UD 15 1967-06-15   Ninian Park, Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom Retained WBC, WBA & lineal featherweight titles
Win 32–1   Mitsunori Seki TKO 7 (15) 1967-01-29   Plaza Mexico, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico Retained WBC, WBA & lineal featherweight titles
Win 31–1   Mitsunori Seki UD 15 1966-08-07   Plaza Mexico, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico Retained WBC, WBA & lineal featherweight titles
Win 30–1   Floyd Robertson KO 2 (15) 1966-02-12   Plaza Mexico, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico Retained WBC, WBA & lineal featherweight titles
Win 29–1   Howard Winstone UD 15 1965-09-07   Earls Court Arena, Kensington, London, United Kingdom Retained WBC, WBA & lineal featherweight titles
Win 28–1   Raul Rojas TKO 15 (15) 1965-05-07   Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, California, United States Retained WBC, WBA & lineal featherweight titles
Win 27–1   Delfino Rosales TKO 11 (15) 1964-12-06   Leon, Guanajuato, Mexico Retained Mexico featherweight title
Win 26–1   Sugar Ramos RTD 12 (15) 1964-09-26   Arena Mexico, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico Won WBC, WBA & lineal featherweight titles
Win 25–1   Ismael Laguna UD 10 1964-06-01   Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico
Win 24–1   Eduardo Guerrero UD 12 1964-04-04   Arena Mexico, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico Retained Mexico featherweight title
Win 23–1   Juan Ramírez TKO 2 (12) 1964-02-08   Arena Mexico, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico Won Mexico featherweight title
Win 22–1   Félix Gutiérrez TKO 3 (10) 1963-12-16   Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico
Win 21–1   Beresford Francis TKO 2 (10) 1963-09-21   Arena Mexico, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 20–1   Eloy Sánchez KO 1 (10) 1963-07-13   Arena Mexico, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 19–1   Baby Luis TKO 8 (10) 1963-06-12   Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 18–1   Dwight Hawkins KO 5 (10) 1963-04-19   Monterrey, Nuevo León, Mexico
Win 17–1   Luis Hernández KO 2 (10) 1963-03-16   Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico
Loss 16–1   Baby Luis DQ 7 (10) 1962-12-29   Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 16–0   Jorge Salazar KO 5 (10) 1962-12-16   Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico
Win 15–0   José López UD 10 1962-11-17   Monterrey, Nuevo León, Mexico
Win 14–0   Luis Hernández KO 1 (10) 1962-10-11   Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico
Win 13–0   Alberto Soto TKO 2 (10) 1962-08-22   Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 12–0   Indio Fernández TKO 6 (10) 1962-06-27   Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 11–0   Genaro González DQ 8 (10) 1962-05-02   Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 10–0   Jorge Salazar KO 4 (10) 1962-04-04   Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico
Win 9–0   Juan Zavala KO 10 (10) 1962-03-18   Tuxtla Gutierrez, Chiapas, Mexico
Win 8–0   Rosendo Martínez TKO 5 (10) 1962-02-08   Puebla, Puebla, Mexico
Win 7–0   Ernesto Beltrán KO 6 (10) 1962-01-06   Acapulco, Guerrero, Mexico
Win 6–0   Juan Rodríguez TKO 6 (10) 1961-12-03   Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico
Win 5–0   José Luis Mora UD 10 1961-10-14   Puebla, Puebla, Mexico
Win 4–0   Babe López KO 3 (8) 1961-05-20   Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico
Win 3–0   Eduardo Meza KO 3 (8) 1961-04-16   Oaxaca, Oaxaca, Mexico
Win 2–0   Frijol González KO 4 (6) 1961-03-22   Oaxaca, Oaxaca, Mexico
Win 1–0   Baby Palacios KO 1 (6) 1961-02-18   Oaxaca, Oaxaca, Mexico professional debut.

DeathEdit

He died of cancer on July 18, 1985, aged only 42.[18] In 1999 he was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame.[19]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Vicente Saldívar. sports-reference.com
  2. ^ Though he was born right handed and started in an orthodox stance; at 2:06 of this video you will hear the commentator say it in Spanish: "Vicente Saldivar vs Sugar Ramos (part 1)". YouTube.
  3. ^ "News – Rediscovering Vicente Saldivar". Max Boxing. June 5, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  4. ^ Bob Ottum (October 23, 1967). "The Mexicans wept tears of joy as Saldivar beat Winstone – 10.23.67 – SI Vault". Sportsillustrated.cnn.com. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  5. ^ "Vincente Saldivar: A Mexican legend". Boxingnews24.com. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  6. ^ "Vicente Saldivar". Cyber Boxing Zone. May 5, 1943. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  7. ^ Jim Amato (October 8, 2010) Vincente Saldivar : A Mexican Ledgend [sic]. ringnews24.com
  8. ^ "Adolfo "Negro" Pérez y su gran campeón Vicente Saldívar – Lic. Tomás Kemp". Oem.com.mx. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  9. ^ "Vincente Saldivar : A Mexican Legend : Boxing Let'S Talk". Boxingletstalk.com. Archived from the original on March 22, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  10. ^ [1]
  11. ^ "Erik Morales representará a Vicente Saldívar en el cine". Solo Boxeo. February 17, 2010. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  12. ^ "Vicente Saldivar – Boxrec Boxing Encyclopaedia". Boxrec.com. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  13. ^ "BBC Sport – Boxing – Howard Winstone v Vicente Saldivar III". BBC News. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  14. ^ "The 100 Greatest Title Fights of All-Time – Boxrec Boxing Encyclopaedia". Boxrec.com. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  15. ^ "Vicente Saldivar vs. Howard Winstone (2nd meeting) – Boxrec Boxing Encyclopaedia". Boxrec.com. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  16. ^ "Home". Max Boxing. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  17. ^ "Eder Jofre vs. Vicente Saldivar – Boxrec Boxing Encyclopaedia". Boxrec.com. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  18. ^ "Mexican Legend: Vicente Saldivar". BoxeoMundial. Archived from the original on September 11, 2011. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  19. ^ Vicente Saldivar. International Boxing Hall of Fame

External linksEdit

Achievements
Preceded by
Sugar Ramos
WBA Featherweight Champion
1964 Sep 26 – 1967 Oct
Retired
Succeeded by
Raul Rojas
WBC Featherweight Champion
1964 Sep 26 – 1967 Oct
Retired
Succeeded by
Howard Winstone
Lineal Featherweight Champion
1964 Sep 26 – 1967 Oct
Retired
Vacant
Title next held by
Johnny Famechon
Preceded by
Johnny Famechon
WBC Featherweight Champion
1970 May 9 – 1970 Dec 11
Succeeded by
Kuniaki Shibata
Lineal Featherweight Champion
1970 May 9 – 1970 Dec 11