Sports in Puerto Rico – Birthplace of Roberto Clemente!

From Boxing to Baseball


Did you know- Puerto Rico ‘s basketball player TeĆ³filo Cruz, a veteran of the Puerto Rican national squad, competed in five Olympic Games: Rome 1960, Tokyo 1964, Mexico 1968, Munich 1972, and Montreal 1976.


Did you know- By 1975, in the Caribbean Boxing Championship in Guatemala City, the national team won five medals ( two gold and three silver) and took second place in unofficial team standings, outpacing Cuba, Colombia and Mexico. A year ago, the Puerto Rican team came in seventh place in the World Boxing Championship, ahead of Venezuela, Bulgaria, East Germany, and France.

Caribbean Games

Did you know- A 537-member team from Puerto Rico competed in the Central American and Caribbean Games in the early 1980s.

Don German Rieckehoff

Did you know- Don German Rieckehoff, former President of the Puerto Rican National Olympic Committee, was one of the Latin America’s most respected Olympic leaders. Under his leadership, San Juan de Puerto Rico hosted the VIII Pan American Games in the late 70s.

Roberto Clemente

Did you know- Puerto Rico was once home to Roberto Walker Clemente, one of the greatest professional players in the history of baseball. Between 1955 and 1972, he played for the Pittsburgh Pirates. His greatest triumph was captaining his team to their ninth World Series title in 1971. For his achievements, he was named “Most Valuable Player” in the mid-1960s. Subsequently, he was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Unfortunately,he died in 1972. Without a doubt, Mr Clemente will be remembered as the most remarkable Puerto Rican athlete of all time.

San Juan de Puerto Rico

Did you know- San Juan de Puerto Rico hosted the 8th Pan American Games in 1979. Lord Killanin, former President of the International Olympic Committee, said, “I have happy memories of my visit to San Juan, Puerto Rico for the VIII Pan American Games, and of the excellent organization and atmosphere prevailing there. I hope the Pan American Games will continue to flourish”.


Did you know- Traditionally, baseball, basketball, and bowling are the most popular sports on the Island.


Did you know- Since 1966, Puerto Rico has had many notable swimmers in Latin America: From Carlos Berrocal, Ricardo Busquets, and Fernando Canales to Filiberto Colon, and Ana Lallande. In addition to these athletes, the Island is the birthplace of Jesse Vassallo. The Puerto Rican-born athlete, who competed for the United States, was one of swimming’s greatest performers in the late 1970s. By 1979, Mr Vassallo won four medals (three gold and one silver) at the VIII Pan American Games. A year ago, in August 22, 1978, Mr Vassallo set a new world record in the men’s 400-meter individual medley at the FINA World Championships in Berlin (West Germany).

Alejandro Guevara Onofre: Freelance writer. Alejandro is author of a host of articles/essays about over 220 countries and dependencies (and American States as well), from ecology, history, tourism and national heroes to Olympic sports, foreign relations, and wildlife. In addition, he has published some books on women’s rights, among them “History of the Women in America” and “Famous Americans.”