Gay boxer Orlando Cruz has vowed to make history by becoming the first gay boxing world champion.
Cruz announced his intentions ahead of his match against Luis Sanchez next week. If he wins the match against Sanchez he will move proceed to have a match against the current featherweight champion, Miguel Berchelt.
Cruz hopes to make history once again after he became the first openly gay professional fighter in boxing. Cruz came out in 2012 and married his long term boyfriend José Manuel in 2013.
The boxer has been an ongoing advocate for the LGBT community and was celebrated after winning a fight that he dedicated to the Orlando massacre victims.
At the weigh-in, he wore rainbow-coloured briefs and stood in silence as a bell tolled 49 times—once for each life lost.
Cruz made the announcement in El Voerco, a Puerto Rican newspaper. He said: “We are working hard for this fight and hope to do well. We are facing Berchelt in January or February for the interim world title. But I have an excellent team and we have no hurry to get to that point. We are at the time of assimilating weight and going step by step.”
“At 35-years-old – I feel great. I know my opponent will come to fight, but I am prepared and ready for victory and then to be crowned world champion. I’m focused on becoming the only gay world champion in boxing history,” he added.
Cruz previously spoke about being a role model for anyone who wants to take up boxing as a professional career. “I want to try to be the best role model I can be for kids who might look into boxing as a sport.”