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Cuban boxer with two Olympic gold medals leaves national team

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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

Cuban nearly long jumps out of sand pit with best mark in 23 years (video)

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Cuban 19-year-old Juan Miguel Echevarria unleashed the farthest long jump under any conditions in 23 years, leaping 8.83 meters (29 feet, 11 1/2 inches) at a Diamond League meet in Stockholm on Saturday.

It would have been the fifth-best jump of all time (Mike Powell‘s world record from 1991 is 8.95) if not for too much tailwind. Echevarria jumped with 2.1 meters/second wind in his favor. The maximum allowable tailwind for record purposes is 2.0 meter/second.

Echevarria must settle for having the farthest jump under any conditions since countryman Ivan Pedroso‘s controversial 8.96-meter jump at altitude in the Italian Alps in 1995 that would have been a world record. Italian media quickly questioned Pedroso’s jump, reporting a man standing in front of the wind gauge on the Cuban’s attempts.

There were 60 long jumps and triple jumps at that meet, and 56 exceeded the maximum allowable wind for record purposes. Three of the four legal jumps were Pedroso’s, including the “record” jump at 1.2 meters per second, according to 1995 reports.

Italy’s track and field federation didn’t even bother submitting the jump to the sport’s international governing body for world record ratification, given the circumstances.

STOCKHOLM: Full meet results

Back to Echevarria. He won the world indoor title on March 2 and on Sunday beat both Olympic champion Jeff Henderson from the U.S. and world outdoor champion Luvo Manyonga of South Africa.

The Diamond League takes a 20-day break before the next meet in Paris. The USATF Outdoor Championships are next for top Americans from June 21-24.

In other events Sunday, Olympic 100m hurdles champion Brianna McNeal clocked the fastest time since July 4, winning in 12.38 seconds. The field did not include world-record holder Kendra Harrison or world champion Sally Pearson of Australia.

Armand Duplantis, the recent Lafayette (La.) high school graduate who pole vaults for Sweden, beat world champion Sam Kendricks for the first time in seven head-to-heads. Duplantis cleared 5.86 meters, while Kendricks came in second at 5.81. World-record holder and 2012 Olympic champion Renaud Lavillenie holds the best clearance in the world this year of 5.95, but the Frenchman wasn’t in Sunday’s field.

Jamaican Fedrick Dacres won a discus that included the top five men in the world this year. Dacres threw 69.67 meters, the world’s farthest mark since last June 29.

Bahamian Steven Gardiner, who ranks No. 2 in the 400m and No. 3 in the 200m this year, stumbled coming around the turn of the 200m and stopped, taking off his left shoe while being attended to. World champion Ramil Guliyev of Turkey won in 19.92 seconds, shy of the 2018 world lead of 19.69 shared by South African Clarence Munyai and American Noah Lyles.

In the 1500m, American Jenny Simpson aimed for her first Diamond League win in three years, but nobody could hang with Ethiopian Gudaf Tsegay, who clocked a meet record 3:57.64 and won by .89 of a second over Brit Laura Muir. Simpson was fourth.

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Olympic discus medalist stripped in doping retest

Yarelis Barrios
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Cuban discus thrower Yarelys Barrios is the latest 2008 Olympian to be stripped of a medal as the detailed results of recent retests of doping samples from eight years ago continue to pour in.

Barrios took silver in Beijing behind Stephanie Brown Trafton, who became the first U.S. woman to win an Olympic throws title since 1932. However, it appears the silver medal was auctioned on Ebay for $11,655.55 in June.

The recent retest showed Barrios tested positive for acetazolamide, a banned diuretic and masking agent, according to the International Olympic Committee.

Barrios earned a silver or bronze medal at the 2008 Olympics, 2009 Worlds, 2011 Worlds, 2012 Olympics and 2013 Worlds and then did not compete again until this season.

Her 2012 Olympic medal came only after she was moved up from fourth to third following the announcement that Russian silver medalist Darya Pishchalnikova tested positive for an anabolic steroid.

None of Barrios’ medals from global competitions after the 2008 Olympics have been stripped.

Also Thursday, Nigerian-born Qatari sprinter Samuel Francis had his 2008 Olympic 100m results annulled as a doping retest came back positive for the steroid stanozolol. Francis was eliminated in the 100m semifinals in Beijing.

MORE: Four more Beijing 2008 medalists stripped after doping retests