Robeisy Ramirez, the only man to win boxing gold at both the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, left the national team during a training camp in Mexico, according to Cuba’s national sports institute.
“Attitudes like this are far from our values and the discipline that characterizes our sport,” the Cuban sports institute read, adding that Ramirez was “turning his back” on his teammates, according to a Reuters translation.
Ramirez, then 18, became the youngest Olympic men’s boxing champion in 32 years when he won the flyweight division at London 2012. He moved up to bantamweight in Rio and beat American Shakur Stevenson in that final, becoming the eight Cuban boxer to earn multiple gold medals.
Ramirez was an underdog at both of his Olympics, having lost in the round of 16 at the 2011 World Championships and been off the national team for six months in 2014 and passed over for Cuba’s spot at the 2015 Worlds.
Ramirez joins a long list of star Cuban athletes to leave the national team or defect. Joahnys Argilagos, a 2016 Olympic light flyweight bronze medalist and two-time world champion, reportedly left the national team in March, also while in Mexico.
Ramirez would be free to turn professional if he’s no longer with the Cuban national team, rather than pursue a third gold medal at Tokyo 2020.
NBC Olympic Research contributed to this report.
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MORE: Last U.S. man to win Olympic boxing gold retires
Three four-round gold medal bouts hit the Olympics on Saturday, with one featuring one of the best American boxing prospects in recent history.
Shakur Stevenson took the silver medal after losing a split decision against Cuba’s Robeisy Ramirez on Saturday in Rio.
WATCH: Full fight replay
Ramirez caught a slow-to-react Stevenson a few times in the first round, and was rewarded with unanimous 10-9 scores from all three judges, but Stevenson came back to land a trio of late shots in the second round to get the same scores in his favor.
The third round was a split decision, with Stevenson winning on Evangelos Bougioukas’ card and Ramirez winning on the cards of Fathi Madfoua and Trong Nghia Vuong.
Stevenson’s fight was in the middle of two others. First, Great Britain flyweight Nicola Adams defeated France’s Sarah Ourahmoune, taking three of four rounds on all three judges’ cards.
Cuban middleweight Arlen Lopez made it two golds for his country on the day, posting a 3-0 win over Uzbekistan’s Bektemir Melikuziev.
Three gold medal fights are on the card for Saturday at the Olympics, with one a very high priority for USA Boxing fans.
Shakur Stevenson will go for bantamweight gold in a fight against Cuba’s Robeisy Ramirez, having fought two less bouts than his opponent.
BOXING: Gold medal bouts
Stevenson’s fight is the second of the three fights, and should start around 1:15 p.m. EDT,
The first is women’s flyweight, where Great Britain’s Nicola Adams will go toe-to-toe with France’s Sarah Ourahmoune.
The men’s middleweights wrap up the day, as Cuba’s Arlen Lopez fights Uzbekistan’s Bektemir Melikuziev.