Stars of Today in Cuban Sports: Iván Silva

Stars of Today in Cuban Sports: Iván Silva
Fecha de publicación: 
24 January 2019

I reached the men’s Judo gym at Cerro Pelado and Iván Felipe Silva Morales (90 kg, born January 8th, 1996) moved like a panther on the mat. Doing randori with a peer of a superior division and he seemed not to get tired at all: projections, change to defense, continued work in Ne-waza after beginning technical moves in the Tachi-waza…

In year 2018 with the World subtitle of Azerbaijan he marked his definitive establishment in the elite of the 90 kg, after a start and a successful pass through the 81 kg, the Judoka from Camaguey agreed to talk with CubaSí after almost three hours of training:

What has changed or how beneficial has been Iván Silva's transition from the 81 to the 90 kg?

“The change was mainly because I was having a hard time to work on the 81 kg for reasons associated to my stage of physical growth. Year 2017 was my first year in the 90 kg and I cannot consider it bad. I won on the first category and the Pan-American Championship.

In 2018 I finished well my adaptation to the new division. I won again the national championship and the reincorporation of Asley González it spurred ne to train harder and raise the levels of training. The randori with him were world class. That contact helped me a lot, not just in America, but also to enter the high world level.

An exact description of an intense competitive year, which you finished with excellent balance in international tournaments with 23 wins 7 lost.

“It was a year in the rising. I was confident as I competed. After the national championship and Pan-American Games of the sport we went to Barranquilla. There I won the individual competition as well as the teams from there we went to Europe. There I improved a lot, I took advantage of the randoris with athletes from Hungary and the rest of Europeans athletes who participated at the training grounds, which was key in my later result at the World Championship.”

Main strengths and elements that you should improve?

“My main strength is the physical side, not just muscle, but endurance, reaching the end of the combat with good capacity. I have won many fights towards the end or in golden rule and right there, even more than techniques sometimes, prevails the will and the drive.

I should increase the variety of my technical repertoire, add some things to my arsenal, focusing mainly in the legs like the Uchi-mata, Ouchi…”

When did you begin in judo?

“I was seven in my hometown Colon. I was off for a while because my first coach left for Venezuela. I practiced baseball encouraged by my cousins back then, but then I returned to judo until today.”

One or several coaches who have influence or decisive in your sport career?

“To mention a single name would be unfair. Alain and Justo Noda, José Jhonson, Danny Porte. At EIDE school Yanosky Gómez and Dayannis Manmo worked a lot with me. Many have helped me, besides my family which is unconditional and supports me even to the tiniest thing.”

What importance do you give to the fact of training daily with Asley González?

“It’s been essential. Professor Justo and now Julio Alderete always tells us that we don’t have to look for champions abroad, the fact of having them right here in the same mat, is very advantageous. I have always tried to learn the best, not only from him, but from all those who have contributed with my training and growth.”

Perspectives looking at Tokyo 2020 knowingly that the World Championship grants a thousand points to the champion?

“I cannot rely on that, I will come out to win my fight as if it were an Olympic final. Being fourth in the world ranking (4 355) and third in the Olympic one (1 455) it doesn't mean I should not keep working hard daily. I will go with everything to the World Championship, the points are essential for the classification and possible fights in the toss.”

Iván Silva certainly has had a brilliant career since his debut with Bronze in the II Olympic Games of Youth in Nanjing 2014. The same result came in World Juvenile Championship of Abu-Dabi 2015. Only in year 2013 he finished with an unfavorable balance regarding wins and lost (4-5).

The specialized website puts his global balance since then with 90 wins and 46 lost, success has been his goal.

The Paris Grand Slam will mark the beginning in this 2019. Silva way ahead has his judo outfit very tight and his mind is focused in one objective: the Olympic podium of Tokyo 2020.

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