Cuban taekwondo athlete banned for life!
A Cuban tae kwon do athlete and his coach were barred for life after the athlete kicked a referee in the face following his disqualification in his bronze medal match. The Cuban coach, Leudis González, offered no apology for the actions of the athlete, Ángel Matos, during the men’s over-80 kilogram (176 pounds) match. Matos was winning, 3-2, in the second round, when he fell to the mat after being hit by his opponent, Kazakhstan’s Arman Chilmanov. He remained there, awaiting medical attention, when he was disqualified for taking too much injury time. Fighters get one minute, and Matos was disqualified when his time ran out. Matos angrily questioned the call, pushed a judge, then pushed and kicked the referee, Chakir Chelbat of Sweden. Matos then spat on the floor and was escorted out. “He was too strict,” González said, referring to the decision to disqualify Matos. Afterward, he charged that the match was fixed, accusing the Kazakhs of offering him money. “This is a strong violation of the spirit of tae kwon do and the Olympic Games,” the World Taekwondo Federation said in a release. It added that there would be a lifetime ban of González and Matos in all championships sanctioned by the organization and that all Matos’s records at the Beijing Games would be erased.