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July 15, 2013 – Mexico City.

From the office of WBC President Dr. José Sulaimán:

The following is one of the weekly “Hook to the Liver” columns that are published in El Universal every Sunday. From July 14, translated from Spanish:


By José Sulaimán

The Heart and Soul of Boxing

In the years of deep reflection about my past, my present and my future, which are the moments I live, I have confidence that I would not change a minute of my life.

And I thank God, who has brought into my life, among other things, boxing. In boxing I’ve found a way to serve others, especially the most needy.

Boxing has given a reason for my life. Boxing is full of drama and poverty. Wealth also comes briefly to the boxer, but in a short time many lose it. A sport of abuses … and from those who do not step into the ring, from the ones that live only for money that this brave sport produces.

Besides so much good and deep love for boxing throughout the world, without getting carried away, there is also ingratitude and treachery.

I wish to again get into the mindset of the boxers concerning their pride, honor, and success through sheer effort, the struggle for dignity and glory. Because in boxing, the true feeling of nobility via battle transcends all other interests. It has to be a sport of good men, from heroes of the people, who respond with pride, respect, dedication, simplicity and joy.

This brings to mind my dear friend, “Mantequilla” Napoles, in his nights of glory – which were so many – especially one in a circus tent in Paris against the great Carlos Monzon. Two greats among the greatest, and sharing the same ring.

Now – and with sadness, but with great and admirable dignity – Muhammad Ali, the greatest of all history, is living with Parkinson’s syndrome. He still and forever has the adoration and affection of the public as was so clearly and touchingly seen in Cancun during the WBC convention, when all rose and shouted in unison: “ALI ! ALI! ALI! like on his nights of supreme historic glory.

It made the Champion of Champions smile and then cry with pride and joy. Like him, there are so many fighters that were so great but now live in reduced circumstances.

In the WBC, we want to keep working for boxing, for the individuals who strive every day in the ring, for those boxing is the greatest passion and entertainment: The Boxers!

One proof of this work is the $250,000 per year that we are already giving to the needy. That amount will be higher, when our people in boxing sensitize and empathize to the deep feeling of help for those who were giants of boxing and now have nothing to eat – those who now need to live with modesty … but also with dignity!

Thank you very much, and until next Sunday.

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