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La Jornada: Zamora and I consolidate the prestige of wars between Mexicans: Carlos Zárate

Juan Manuel Vazquez

La Jornada newspaper
Sunday, February 21, 2021, p. a12

When you talk about wars between Mexicans in boxing, you have to go back to epic duels of pure honor and courage. Púas Olivares against Chucho Castillo or Rafael Herrera, Carlos Zárate against Lupe Pintor or Alfonso Zamora. The latter, a controversial fight from planning to its end in a maddening rampage over the ring of the Forum in Inglewood California, in April 1977.

With that fight, Alfonso and I consolidated the prestige of what would later be called the Mexican wars, says former world champion Carlos Zárate.

Zamora and Zárate were boxers of the mythical Cuyo Hernández. It didn’t seem reasonable for two gym buddies to clash. Both were world bantamweight champions by different agencies. They were both undefeated; it was crazy to fight. But there also lay the tremendous morbidity of confronting them.

There were people who opposed this combat, recalls Zárate; They said that it was better for everyone to stay on their own.

The duel was full of accidents that today are anecdotes. The explosion of an electrical transformer before the combat generated panic. The first episode was just beginning and an intruder broke into the ring and was arrested by the police.

The combat was exciting. Incessant exchange of blows and the triumph of the experience of Zárate, who knocked out Zamora in the fourth inning. The temperature reached delirious levels when the father of the loser went up to kick Cuyo Hernánez and the police had to intervene again.

It was not only a match for the best boxer; Unlike the wars that followed, they also competed for people’s affection.