Mario Kindelán

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This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Kindelán and the second or maternal family name is Mesa.
Mario Kindelán
Medal record
Competitor for  Cuba
Men's Boxing
Olympic Games
Gold 2000 Sydney Lightweight
Gold 2004 Athens Lightweight
World Amateur Championships
Gold 1999 Houston Lightweight
Gold 2001 Belfast Lightweight
Gold 2003 Bangkok Lightweight
Pan American Games
Gold 1999 Winnipeg Lightweight
Gold 2003 Santo Domingo Lightweight
Central American and Caribbean Games
Gold 1993 Ponce Lightweight
Gold 1998 Maracaibo Lightweight

Mario César Kindelán Mesa (born August 10, 1971 in Holguín) is a former two time Olympic Gold Medalist amateur boxer from Cuba, who competed in the lightweight category. He is the cousin of baseball player Orestes Kindelán.

Success[edit]

His most successful period came in a winning streak starting with the 1999 Pan American Games title, and covered every major event he entered including the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, three world championships (1999, 2001, 2003), and the 2003 Pan American Games. His most recent victory was at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, defeating Amir Khan in the final, and retaining his gold medal from four years earlier.

Kindelan holds wins over future professional world champions Felix Trinidad, Miguel Cotto, Amir Khan and Andreas Kotelnik. Kindelan also beat fellow Olympic champions Somluck Kamsing and Felix Diaz[1]

Prior to the Olympics in 2004 Kindelan had beaten Khan 33-13 at the pre-tournament as well as beating him at the Olympics 33-22

Mario Kindelan's amateur record was 358-22, having not lost since 1999 till his retirment in 2004[2]

Amateur Highlights[edit]

  • 1998 World Cup Champion
  • 1999 Pan-American Games Champion
  • 1999 World Champion
  • 2000 Olympic Gold Medalist
  • 2001 World Champion
  • 2003 World Champion
  • 2003 Pan-American Games Champion
  • 2004 Olympic Gold Medalist

In 1999, he was named as one of the top ten athletes in Cuba, and was named Boxer of the Year.

2000 Olympic Games[edit]

2004 Athens Olympic Games[edit]

Kindelan's results in the games, were as follows:

World Amateur Championships[edit]

1999 in Houston, United States (as a lightweight)

  • Defeated Mahlon Kerwick (United States) 10-4
  • Defeated Temur Suleymanov (Uzbekistan) 3-2
  • Defeated Pongsith Wiangwiset (Thailand) 8-2
  • Defeated Gheorghe Lungu (Romania) 9-4
  • Defeated Aleksei Stepanov (Russia) 10-3

2001 in Belfast, Northern Ireland (as a lightweight)

  • Defeated Donier Khatamov (Tajikistan) RSC-OS 2
  • Defeated Martin Kristjansen (Denmark) RSC-OS 3
  • Defeated Patrick Bogere (Sweden) RSC-OS 2
  • Defeated Alexandr Maletin (Russia) RSC-OS 3
  • Defeated Vladimir Kolesnik (Ukraine) 29-15

2003 in Bangkok, Thailand (as a lightweight)

  • Defeated Boris Georgiev (Bulgaria) RSCH 4
  • Defeated Stephen Burke (England) RSC-OS 3
  • Defeated Jong Sub-Baik (South Korea) 30-14
  • Defeated Gyula Kate (Hungary) 24-12
  • Defeated Pichai Sayotha (Thailand) 45-27 [3]

Retirement[edit]

In May 2005, aged 34, he came out of retirement and travelled to Bolton, England for a third fight with Amir Khan. He had beaten Khan twice already the previous year – in the Pre-Olympic tournament and the Olympic Lightweight final – however Khan had become a popular attraction in the UK and a third fight was arranged to set up his professional debut. Khan beat Kindelan on points 19-13.

Having retired, he is generally considered as one of the greatest amateur boxers ever seen, leading to the comment during his final fight by the boxing commentator that he was "a professional in a vest".

Typical for athletes from Cuba, where professional sport is prohibited, his reward is his pride in representing his people on the Olympic stage. He said, of being offered $1 million to compete professionally, "I thanked them, but money cannot buy what I have."

References[edit]