Huitlacoche Medel earned the hatred of Mexico when he beat Toluco López (Photo: Twitter / @ barcenairene)
Delivery. It is the word that almost perfectly describes boxing fans in Mexico. The construction of heroes and gloves references would not be possible without that accumulation of idolatry that complements the good performance of the boxers inside the ring. However, the discontent of the people is also enough to condemn the successful careers of national athletes. This is what happened to José Medel, who earned the hatred of the country when he defeated the toluco López.
“In Japan they must be crying more than in Mexico”, were the words that Raúl Mouse Macías disclosed to the media that Wednesday, January 31, 2001, when the unfortunate death of the ex-boxer was confirmed. And it is that the one born at number 13 Caridad Street, in the heart of the rough neighborhood of Tepito, consolidated a successful career on the Asian continent, since he was denied glory in his native country.
The Huitlacoche saw the light for the first time on March 19, 1938, however it was years later when, by chance, he recognized the fine gifts in his privileged left foot. Contrary to the vast majority of boxers who make their way from the lower class, his path was always characterized by being disciplined, knowing how to manage his earnings and directing his career towards resounding success, something that contrasted with the trend of the time.
Like Mouse Macías, his career was far from vices (Photo: Twitter / @ victormgp)
He entered the discipline by chance. On one occasion, he attended a function where one of the fighters who would complete the card was missing, so he entered that place. Since then, he joined the training team of the mythical Gloria Gymnasium, located on Avenida del Trabajo in the interior of the Morelos neighborhood, and he never took off his boxing gloves again.
His good performances on the amateur circuit put him as a candidate to debut on the professional circuit. It was thus that, with the passage of time, he began to make his way to become one of the star fighters of the Colosseum Arena. With no titles involved, he also overcame Mutt Pimentel and World Esparza for what monopolized the spotlight nationwide.
Fate led him to face another idol of the town, that is, José toluco Lopez. Thus, on August 1, 1959, they fought an epic confrontation in the Mexican capital. After 12 agreed rounds, and with the balance remarkably in his favor, the judges awarded him the glory, however, at the time he raised his arms, he earned popular hatred for having surpassed the partying boxer from El Oro, State of Mexico.
José López el “Toluco” fell a couple of times against Huitlacoche (Photo: Facebook / Mike ChaSo)
Although he became the holder of the national bantamweight title, all the interlocutors who came across in the street reproached him for the triumph. It was so, a year later, he was forced to give his rival a rematch. However, the outlook was worse because, on November 19, 1960 he overcame via knockout and in 7 rounds to toluco. There was no going back. It was of little use to have shone in 1964, against Adolfo López Mateos and Gustavo Díaz Ordaz, when he beat the Filipino Ray Asis in the Cuatro Caminos Bullfight, because the hatred never left.
In search of consolidating his career, he ventured into Japan. There, he beat another idol of the town, that is, Masahiko Horada, but contrary to all odds, he won the affection of the people. Empathy and support prompted him to forge much of his career in Asia, Europe and South America, although his nostalgia for Mexico kept him coming back. The inconsistency denied him the world title twice, in 1962 and 1967.
In his last years, Huitlacoche dedicated himself to training Mexican prospects in the capital (Photo: Twitter / @ lamazon_oficial)
At the end of his professional career he registered 101 fights, of which 67 were victories, 42 by knockout, eight draws and 26 defeats. Despite the hatred of the people of Mexico, he placed himself on a pedestal that few fighters managed to access, that is, having built a healthy career away from vices, as well as scandals.
Although in the twilight of his career he lost to Spikes Olivares, Mutt Castillo and the Alacrán Torres, the Mouse Macías declared that “he was a great boxer, he was fine and accurate. He took great care of himself and he was never vicious (…) if he had stayed there for a longer time (Japan) it would have been great, but he got nostalgic and he returned to Mexico ”.
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