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World Boxing Federation Champions Of The Past: Marco Antonio Rubio
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FEATURE   Photo: Former World Boxing Federation (WBF) World Super Middleweight Champion Marco Antonio Rubio from Mexico. 

Since the World Boxing Federation was originally founded by American Larry Carrier in 1988, many of the sport’s biggest names have won a WBF title, and proudly defended the blue, red and gold belt all over the world.

In the Champions Of The Past Series we take a closer look at some of the boxers who held WBF titles in years gone by, from lesser known champions to world renowned fighters, legends of the sport and current or future Hall of Famers.


Former World Boxing Federation (WBF) World Super Middleweight Champion Marco Antonio “El Veneno” Rubio can look back at a very good career, where he fought some of the best and biggest names the sport had to offer in his era.

Born on June 16, 1980 in Gomez Palacio, a city in Mexican state Durango, he had not yet turned twenty when he made his professional debut in May of 2000, defeating fellow first-timer Alberto Juarez by decision over four rounds in Monterrey.

Rubio also won his next five, all by stoppage, before colliding with another undefeated Mexican prospect in Saul “La Fiera” Roman (8-0), who handed him his first defeat by second round technical knockout on June 1, 2001.

He didn't let the defeat discourage him too much, as he was back in the ring six weeks later, stopping Ismael Diaz (6-12-2) to start another five-fight winning run before drawing with Dominican Julio Cesar De La Cruz (14-3), in March of 2002.

The draw with De La Cruz could be considered his best result up to that point, but in his very next bout, on May 17, 2002, he would top that by stopping very experienced former WBC World Welterweight Champion Jorge Vaca (65-24-2) in the fourth round.

The Vaca-triumph established Rubio as a genuine prospect, and during the following year he would put a thick line under that by winning the Mexican national Super Welterweight title and defending it five times, including a decisive (TKO 4) rematch victory over his sole conqueror Saul Roman (now 11-1).

In June of 2003 Runio was matched with very capable Calvin Odom (13-4), who had won seven of his last eight outings and was considered a real test for the Mexican. But Rubio made light work of the American, scoring a first round stoppage in his birth city.

For his next step up the ladder, Rubio was paired with undefeated Nicaraguan Jose Varela (16-0) on the first day of August, 2003. On the line was the vacant WBC International Super Welterweight title, and Rubio proved devastating again, scoring a second round knockout.

Two months on, he traveled to Russia where he annihilated local man Akhmed Oligov (12-3) in the first round of a WBC title-defense, before returning to Mexico for another first round destruction of compatriot Christian Solano (17-3-3) only five weeks later.

In May of 2004, Rubio solidified himself as a top contender, when, only seventeen days apart, neither Alfred Ankamah (20-10), nor former WBF World Champion Fitz Vanderpool (24-5-4) made it through the first three minutes with him.

Jeffrey Hill (24-5) went seven rounds before Rubio caught up with him in August of 2004, but “El Veneno” looked more than ready to challenge for a world championship at 27-1-1 (24), with twelve of his opponents failing to see the second round.

Unfortunately for Rubio, he was too dangerous a foe for a champion to grant him a voluntary title-shot, so six weeks after beating Hill he returned to the ring in a world title eliminator, on the undercard of Julio Cesar Chavez vs. Fankie Randall at MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

By far his biggest fight to date, and aired live on HBO Pay-Per-View in America, Rubio squared off with Ghanaian Kofi Jantuah (27-1), and it all came tumbling down for him. Jantuah landed a vicious left hook clean on the chin, knocking Rubio out cold only 33 seconds into the fight.

On the biggest stage, and so close to a crack at world honors, it was hard to imagine a worse scenario for Rubio. He hardly landed a punch, or broke a sweat, and before he had a chance to get started it was quickly “back in line”.

But Rubio was willing to work his way back to the front of that line, and in 2005 he scored six victories, all inside the distance, most notably getting rid of the aforementioned former world champion Frankie Randall (58-15-1) and unbeaten David Turibio (12-0), both inside two rounds.

He also beat contender Juan Carlos Candelo (26-7-3) on a rare ten-round decision, and respected trial-horse Grady Brewer (18-10), so he was deemed ready for another make-or-break encounter against Russian Aslanbek Kodzoev (17-1-1) in late January, 2006.

Headlining a show promoted by Golden Boy Promotions at the Cicero Stadium in Illinois, Rubio was declared the winner when Kodzoev didn't come out for round eight, claiming a rib-injury, putting him in line for another world title eliminator.

On May 6, 2006, on the undercard of Oscar De La Hoya vs. Richardo Mayorga, back on HBO Pay-Per-Viev, Rubio took on former IBF World Champion Kassim Ouma (23-2-1). It appeared to be Rubio´s night when he floored the Ugandan with a series of right hands in the first round, but Ouma had other ideas.

Not a stranger to adversity, inside or outside the ring, he beat the count and worked himself back into the fight. It turned into an even affair, and after twelve rounds two of the judges scored it for Ouma, making him the winner by split decision.

Perhaps a little too eager to rebound from the defeat, Rubio agreed to go to Ukraine for a bout against another contender in Zaurbek Baysangurov (14-0) three months later, knowing a victory would put him back where he were before the Ouma fight.

Again he scored a knock-down in the first round, but Baysangurov, who went on to win the European title as well as IBO and WBO world titles, wasn't seriously hurt and came back to control the fight and win by unanimous decision.

Rubio decided it was time to move up in weight, and eight straight Middleweight victories put him in line for his third world title eliminator in October of 2008, this time against Enrique Ornelas (28-4) at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.

It was a close encounter, with Rubio the aggressor and Ornelas the counter-puncher for much of the bout, but Rubio finished strong and almost scored a stoppage in round eleven. After a big final round, Rubio got the split decision verdict, and a crack at WBC/WBO World Middleweight Champion Kelly Pavlik (34-1) next.

Having finally secured a world championship fight, almost nine years after his debut, it would not be long before Rubio went back into training-camp as the Pavlik fight was scheduled for February 21, 2009 at the Chevrolet Centre in the champions home-town of Youngstown.

Rubio fought his chance against Pavlik, having some success, but the American was on top of his game and stunned the challenger several times. As the rounds went on, Pavlik started to take over and administered enough punishment on Rubio to force his corner to retire their fighter before the start of the tenth round.

There was no shame in losing to Pavlik, who´s only defeat had come against all-time great Bernard Hopkins, and Rubio had plenty more to offer the boxing world.

Between October 2009 and January 2011, he rebuild himself with victories over Jose Berrio (20-2), Rigoberto Alvarez (24-1), the brother of Canelo, Jaison Palomeque (13-2-1), Samuel Miller (20-3), Jose Luis Zertuche (21-6-3), and Wilson Santana (11-0).

That string of victories earned him another world title eliminator, but not many expected him to have much of a chance against Canadian destroyer David Lemieux (25-0), who had only gone the distance once, on April 8, 2011 at the Bell Centre in Montreal.

But the 8/1 underdog took everything Lemieux dished out, weathered a few storms, and caused a major upset when he floored the crowd-favorite in round seven before forcing the Canadian corner to throw in the towel.

With his second world title opportunity in the bag, Rubio stayed busy with victories over Ricardo Ramallo (8-1), Mohammed Akrong (13-3) and Matt Vanda (44-13), before challenging for the WBC World Middleweight title, now held by Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. (44-0-1), in February of 2012.

After a competitive fight, Chavez won by unanimous decision (115-113, 116-112, 118-110) in front of a large crowd at the Alomodome in San Antonio, Texas, not far from the Mexican border. Rubio again proved he belonged, but he just couldn't take the final step. Yet!

Not one to look for an easy route, Rubio quickly got himself back in the world rankings when he stopped undefeated Jorge Cota (16-0) for the IBF International Middleweight title on June 30, 2012. But it would be at Super Middleweight he received his third opportunity to become world champion.

After twelve years in the paid ranks, Rubio made the most of it when he stopped former WBC and IBA World Champion Carlos Manuel Baldomir (49-14-6) from Argentina to win the vacant World Boxing Federation (WBF) World Super Middleweight title on September 8, 2012 in Celaya, Mexico.

The following December, Rubio successfully defended his WBF world title when he stopped Michel Rosales (32-5) in round eleven. He then decided he wanted to go back to Middleweight, where big money fights against the likes of Canelo Alvarez and Gennadiy Golovkin were possibilities.

After two routine victories over Marcus Upshaw (15-8-2) and Dionisio Miranda (22-8-2), he won the Interim WBC World Middleweight title when he knocked out Italian Domenico Spada (38-4) in April of 2014. That win set up a unification clash with WBA/IBO champion Golovkin (30-0), who stopped Rubio in the second round.

Rubio last fought in September of 2015, losing on points to former WBC World Super Middleweight Champion Anthony Dirrell (27-1-1).

With several regional titles, WBF and WBC world titles, major fights and major victories, Marco Antonio Rubio can be proud of his accomplishments over fifteen years. His final record stands at 59-8-1 (51).

  Part 80: Tamas Kovacs
  Part 79: Goda Dailydaite
  Part 78: Richard Williams
  Part 77: John Scully
  Part 76: Joseph Agbeko
  Part 75: Jenifer Salinas
  Part 74: Sven Hamer
  Part 73: Rob Calloway
  Part 72: Nedal Hussein
  Part 71: Irma Sanchez
  Part 70: Moses James
  Part 69: Cornelius Carr
  Part 68: Zolani Marali
  Part 67: Nicky Bentz
  Part 66: James Hare
  Part 65: Anne Sophie Mathis
  Part 64: Earl Butler
  Part 63: Dave Russell
  Part 62: Tony Dodson
  Part 61: Pete Taliaferro
  Part 60: Fredrik Alvarez
  Part 59: Ajose Olusegun
  Part 58: Chevelle Hallback
  Part 57: Evander Holyfield
  Part 56: Peter Culshaw
  Part 55: Rolando Toyogon
  Part 54: Joaquin Velasquez
  Part 53: Steve Molitor
  Part 52: Nadya Hokmi
  Part 51: Bert Cooper
  Part 50: Alfred Kotey
  Part 49: Yosuke Nishijima
  Part 48: Wayne Rigby
  Part 47: Jesus Chong
  Part 46: Renata Szebeledi
  Part 45: Lester Ellis
  Part 44: Patrick Vungbo
  Part 43: Patrick Washington
  Part 42: Ric Siodora
  Part 41: Guy Waters
  Part 40: Natascha Ragosina
  Part 39: Nicky Cook
  Part 38: Fahprakorb Rakkiatgym
  Part 37: Felix Camacho
  Part 36: Homer Gibbins
  Part 35: Joe Bugner
  Part 34: Myriam Lamare
  Part 33: Darrin Morris
  Part 32: Suwito Lagola
  Part 31: Aaron Zarate
  Part 30: Tommy Small
  Part 29: Matthew Charleston
  Part 28: Jane Couch
  Part 27: Fahlan Sakkreerin
  Part 26: Kenny Keene
  Part 25: Yvan Mendy
  Part 24: Ronnie Magramo
  Part 23: Randall Yonker
  Part 22: Holly Holm
  Part 21: Vinnie Curto
  Part 20: Robin Reid
  Part 19: Lionel Butler
  Part 18: Mads Larsen
  Part 17: Ken Sigurani
  Part 16: Orlando Fernandez
  Part 15: Roger Turner
  Part 14: Roy Jones Jr.
  Part 13: Fitz Vanderpool
  Part 12: Steve Roberts
  Part 11: Thulani "Sugarboy" Malinga
  Part 10: Junior Witter
  Part 9: Jimmy Thunder
  Part 8: Juan Lazcano
  Part 7: Jeff Malcolm
  Part 6: Ricky Parkey
  Part 5: Carl Daniels
  Part 4: Angel Manfredy
  Part 3: Samson Dutch Boy Gym
  Part 2: Greg Haugen
  Part 1: Johnny Nelson

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