Antonio DeMarco, former lightweight world champion who is a survivor of the Covid 19, explains how its aftermath can affect a boxer, and believes that this could be a factor in the recent defeat of Miguel “Alacrán” Berchelt against Oscar Valdez.
“The way Berchelt he dragged his legs, the way he threw his blows were symptoms of sequelae “, he explains From Marco in interview for LEFT PUNCH. “Berchelt He doesn’t have great technique, but his strokes were so slow that it seemed like he was carrying lead in his arms. When you are weak, when you are not well, when you did not start well from the first round, it shows. The fight from the first round was one-sided, because simply, boy (Berchelt) it wasn’t 100%. “
At the beginning of last November, it was reported that Miguel Berchelt had contracted Covid 19, as he prepared for his fight with Oscar Valdez. Originally, the duel between the two Mexicans was scheduled for December 12. But, before the positive of Covid of Berchelt, the fight had to be postponed.
Antonio From Marco believes that the aftermath of Covid, added to the difficulty to give the weight could add him against Berchelt so he wouldn’t look like he had seen in past fights.
“We all know that Berchelt it’s a bit clumsy, if you want to call it that, ”says the former world champion. But in the fight with Valdez looked excessively. And that was physical weakness. Remember that it is very large for the weight. I think BercheltSince he got into the ring, he looked very weak, haggard, sucked from the face. From the fourth on he was much weaker. It is not to detract from Oscar, but when these things happen, like the effort to give weight, and also the Covid, all that affects. We have two or three months to prepare, but with one thing that fails first, everything falls apart. For all that, I saw Berchelt lacking in resources ”.
Antonio DeMarco and his fight against Covid 19
Antonio DeMarco He had Covid 19 almost eight months ago, and he assures that he continues to suffer the consequences left by the disease.
“Almost eight months have passed and I continue to have complications,” he explains. From Marco. “I fought on June 16 against Giovani Santillán at La Burbuja in Las Vegas. The fight ended, and about a week and a half, or two weeks later, I started to feel bad, to feel weird. I kept running, training, but I never took a test. I wanted to ignore that, in a very silly way of me. They were very rare symptoms. I was running, I felt bad. He couldn’t hold when he ran. I told myself that I was going to improve and no. I even sparred after the fight, because I wanted to come back quickly. Top rank he had offered us a three-fight contract. But it gives us Covid, although we did not know what it was Covid“.
From Marco think you caught it in the gym from Jorge Capetillo in Las Vegas, where he did his preparation, and where other colleagues were also infected. The symptoms of the virus were getting worse, until it was completely reduced. Tony he thought he was going to die.
“We continued training until the moment came when I couldn’t take it anymore, and I had to stop,” he recalls From Marco. “I was at home, I recovered one day, and then the next I felt super bad. He had dizziness, vomiting, diarrhea, weak, very weak. I really felt that I was going to die. That’s how he gave me, to that magnitude ”.
The fighter assures that he did not want to be admitted to a hospital for fear of being intubated.
“It gave me so much panic that it hurt me psychologically,” he recalls From Marco. “Because of how bad I felt, I didn’t want to leave my house. I lacked oxygenation, I lacked air. I felt that if I went to the hospital they would want to intubate me. That was going through my head, and I didn’t want to go. Some time later I took the test, and I came out positive for antibodies. In other words, I had already had it, that it had been Covid. I cried with my wife because she couldn’t breathe and so I threw her off. God helped me, because I was just in the house and I didn’t take care of myself. I think he did need oxygen to breathe. It was a horrible process. “
The Mochitense also details how, eight months after the infection, the consequences continue to affect his training.
“All this is totally uncertain, because you don’t know when you are going to feel good, and when you feel bad,” he explains. From Marco. “There are times when I have felt very good, I have knuckled and everything. And there are other times when I can’t do it fast, and after a round or two I get tired. On those occasions that I have endured, and that I have felt good, I do not know why. Sometimes symptoms like having a little diarrhea one day, or a little headache, and heaviness in the part of the brain, things like that, come back. There is also a little pain in the back of the back. I have already done all kinds of studies and everything looks good. There is still little weakness. For example, I was planning to spar in two days to see how I was feeling. But well, today I woke up, and again I have diarrhea and a little heaviness; It is not so much a headache, but it is like anger. This is all very weird. I think it does hurt a lot ”.
The effects that Covid can have on a boxer
The former lightweight world champion thinks the aftermath of the Covid 19 they can seriously affect a high performance athlete such as a boxer. And that have affected fighters who, like Berchelt, they had to postpone their fights for Covid 19.
“Several athletes with whom I spoke, feel that they had sequels,” he says From Marco. “Something was left of all that. In Las Vegas, the contract for those three fights fell, I couldn’t fight anymore, and I couldn’t recover. And I see that most fighters who have postponed their fights for Covid, they have lost. It is very bad, because in this pandemic, the fights are not being couples. And they are not being quite couples, because the Covid it weakens a lot ”.
Did the aftermath of the Covid affect Berchelt?
And it could be the Covid, in the opinion of Antonio DeMarco, some of what caused Miguel Berchelt will arrive in inferior conditions against a rival who, as Oscar Valdez, he made the perfect fight.
By telling you this, I don’t want to take any credit from Valdez nor to his work team ”, he emphasizes From Marco. “Eddy reynoso He is a great coach and Oscar It is a fighter. We all knew it was going to be a very tough fight, 50-50, I always said that. Both had their strengths and weaknesses. Still, we looked more technical in Valdez, but more strength and solidity in Berchelt. Oscar He gave a magnificent demonstration that left us all speechless ”.
But in the analysis of From Marco, arriving Berchelt weakened in his explosiveness, hand speed, and power, made Oscar Valdez look more.
“Valdez It is a great fighter, but when you are that weak, you make the other opponent see that he is hitting you ugly, and it looks very convincing, “he explains. From Marco. “But it is because of the same weakness and faculties that you lack at the moment. And I mean it without offending Oscar Valdez, and I hope they don’t take it the wrong way for him, nor his team. They understand that they are not to blame, I repeat it. But it does make you look a little more compelling, more solid, better. You look better, because of the opponent’s deficiency. It has happened to me. I have been both parties: I have had to beat opponents this weak, and I have had to be the loser and be the weak one ”.
From Marco is convinced that they should have stopped the fight before Miguel Berchelt for the weakness he was presenting on the ring. He thinks they didn’t because of the magnitude of the fight.
“It was a very high expectation fight,” he says. From Marco. “And I think that’s why the referee, the commission and the corner were a little scared to stop the fight. We all thought it was going to be a war, but to be honest it was a one-sided war. And, being a one-sided war, a fight has to be stopped. Berchelt He is very brave, but in this profession we have seen that courage has sometimes led to very strong tragedies. That is why we are in charge of third parties, such as the corners, the commission and the referee. I think they must have acted earlier. This can end not only the career, but also the life of a fighter. When the body does not give you, you cannot do anything, and all you have is heart and desire. And a fighter is never going to say no. Berchelt it was empty from the start of the fight.
From Marco emphasize that Oscar Valdez fought the best fight of his life, and that, contrasted with the weakness of Berchelt, for him Covid and the weight, made the fight very uneven.
“It is not detracting from Oscar, I insist, fighter ”, emphasizes the fighter. “Oscar He did a wonderful strategy, I really liked the strategy he did, how the fight ended was wonderful. But what I’m going to is that Berchelt I was not even 50% and Valdez it was 150% ”.
The little that Berchelt could do in the fight, according to From MarcoIt was based on pure heart. After the first fall of Berchelt In the fourth round, the champion seemed to recover and get back in the fight. From Marco he does not believe he has been recovered.
“He recovers in the fifth, but in reality, he never recovered Berchelt“, Says From Marco. “What he did was try to control to show that he wasn’t hurt, but he was hurt well. He never recovered. When Berchelt he won a few rounds, it was because he was fighting against all tide and with all his will, but he could no longer, and they looked at him when he reached the corner ”.
The fighter thinks the corner of Miguel Berchelt, commanded by Alfredo Caballero, he must have been more vehement to protect his fighter.
“The fault is not even Oscar, nor has it Berchelt, nor do the corners. Well, the corners are to blame, because the corners are there to take care of the fighters. The referee, the corners or the commission had to stop the fight much earlier so as not to get to what happened, ”says the Sinaloan.
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The dream of having a better life can also be the worst trap
At the end, Antonio DeMarco he recognizes that he himself, like Berchelt, Valdez, and all boxers in the world fight, first to be champions, and then to win the best bag of their careers.
“We want to be world champions and hence look for the biggest bag to make, as we say, that everything is worth it”, he reflects From Marco. “To ensure the family, the daughter, the wives and have a better future. We all seek that. And sometimes that works against your health. The boxers who come from below, humble, we are willing to leave our lives in the ring to give a better life to ours. We are not going to look like cowards, or like we get it back. That leads to fights that sometimes look uneven. We agree to sign a contract, although we can no longer give this weight, or that it comes from healing from a disease as complicated as it is Covid, but we all say ‘I’m going to raffle it’. Everyone has that thought. We all need to always grasp the best, whatever happens, and as we are. We always fight for the biggest bag, and sometimes, that bag doesn’t show up at the most opportune moment. But we still have to grab it ”.