U.S. boxer Davin King won the silver medal in the super heavyweight class (201-plus pounds) tonight, but not the way he wanted. King, from Temple Hills, Md., was scheduled to face Cuban Alexis Rubalcaba in the final but was forced to withdraw.
King suffered a deep cut to his lip during Thursday's semifinal bout with Argentina's Manuel Azar. The stitches he received were bothering him this morning, and doctors told him that a further blow to his lip would cause extensive damage.
"I didn't plan this; it's just something that happened," said the 19-year-old King. " . . . I'm sad, but I'm glad that at least I'm bringing a medal back for the USA."
At 6 feet 8 and 250 pounds, Rubalcaba was the largest fighter in the tournament. The longest that any opponent had lasted against him was 41 seconds into the second round.
"The wound is deep; it's not a little scratch," U.S. Coach Pete Balcunas said. When you're in a division where the punches can hurt you, you don't want to take a chance with [an injured] lip."
Fewer Sports in 2003?
The 2003 Pan American Games in the Dominican Republic will include no more than 30 sports, the president of the organizing committee said today.
This year's Games included 41 sports, but organizing committee president Jose Joaquin Puello said it is necessary to reduce that number because the Games have become too large.
U.S. Softball Wins
Lisa Fernandez singled home Dot Richardson in the eighth inning tonight, giving the United States to a 1-0 victory over Canada and the gold medal in women's softball. The U.S. team went 12-0. . . . The U.S. women's basketball team won the bronze medal with a 85-59 victory over Brazil. With the win, the United States continued its streak of earning a medal in women's basketball in every Pan Am Games since 1955. . . . A Cuban basketball player left the team's delegation, saying today he planned to seek asylum in the United States.
Juan Leopoldo Vazquez defected before a morning game. He is the ninth member of the Cuban delegation to leave, and the seventh athlete.