World title boxing contenderYordenis Ugas was incredibly jailed six times before achieving his sporting dream.
The Cuban has reached the pinnacle heading into his unification bout with Errol Spence Jr., but rewind to 2010 and he was fighting a living hell. Then an amateur boxer, Ugas could only go pro if he escaped his home country, where sports for pay had been banned since 1959 – a law only overturned just last week.
He had six failed defection attempts, all of which led to time behind bars, before finally reaching Mexico without being detained and heading to the United States for a new life.
"Absolutely the will inside me is always carry over into a fight," Ugas told The Sun. "There were times when I was really down after spending days in jail but I never lost hope.
"Being a role model is very important when you are a high profile athlete. I will always do my best to be a humble fighter that inspires others."
Who are you backing this weekend? Let us know in the comments section.
Now 35, the WBA welterweight king has endured a remarkable journey to get to the top. He retired from boxing in 2014 after back-to-back defeats.
It was not until after fellow countryman Aroldis Chapman, a baseball star then playing for the Cincinnati Reds, had offered him a financial lifeline did he return in 2016. Since then Ugas has lost just once.
After winning the vacant WBA (Regular) title in 2020, he was made WBA (Super) champion last year because of Manny Pacquiao's inactivity. However, he legitimised his crown in August by stunning the legendary Filipino after Spence had pulled out of facing him.
Ugas is looking to cause an upset once again on Saturday (April 16) by handing the American his first loss, after which the aim is to become undisputed. He added: "If I become an undisputed world champion at any time in my career, then I will have cemented my legacy as one of the best fighters in boxing history."
Source: Read Full Article