LAS VEGAS -- A key factor in USA men’s boxing's medal-less 2012 Olympics was its inability to adjust to international styles. On Tuesday, USA Boxing took the first step towards addressing that issue, hiring decorated Cuban coach Pedro Roque Otano in the newly created position of International Teaching Coach.
A coach for more than 40-years, Roque Otano has coached athletes from multiple countries to 35 Olympic medals -- including 11 golds -- and 43 medals in World Championship competitions. In his new role, Roque Otano will work with coaches across the U.S. to help prepare fighters for elite international competitions.
“USA Boxing is fortunate to have secured the best coach in the world to help lead Team USA back to a position of prominence,” said USA Boxing executive director Anthony Bartkowski. “His resume includes a large laundry list of successes, including but not limited to, AIBA Coach of the Decade. Yet it does not begin to express or convey his passion, drive, and dedication to help our athletes and coaches win. He is completely dedicated to Team USA. The focus of our program must be on high performance at all elite age groups, and this starts with the expertise of Pedro and integrating the personal coaches and athletes. It is imperative for USA Boxing to rebuild systematically with the talents Pedro brings to our program.”
Among Roque Otano’s other duties:
• Develop the training schedule for the elite athletes as well as executing the elements of the high performance plan focused on the development of boxers and coaches.
• Create a uniform coach certification program as well as leading clinics in various areas across the United States.
• Personally develop additional coach clinicians to assist in giving clinics throughout the country.
• Develop the top personal coaches in the United States and assist them in becoming AIBA certified to ensure they are able to work the corners of their athletes at major international events.
Roque Otano will begin work immediately, hosting two clinics in Texas later this month.
“I thank USA Boxing for giving me the possibility of working with its boxers. I am very satisfied and happy for this opportunity,” Roque Otano said. “I promise to put all my national and international experience to the service of the development of boxing in the United States and to work continuously to achieve medals in all the World Championships, Pan American Games and Olympic Games in men’s and women’s boxing.”
-- Chris Mannix