US beats Cuba 9-4 in wrestling exhibition in Times Square

The video screens of Times Square shining a spotlight down on him, Olympic champion Jordan Burroughs smiled widely for the TV cameras as he described his goals of the last three years: andquotTrying to become a better interviewee.andquot
The American wrestling star was only sort of joking. After winning his second NCAA title as a senior at Nebraska in 2011, Burroughs soared to the top of the sport, opening his senior-level career with 69 straight victories before his first loss.
And that gold medal in London in 2012 made him a spokesman for wrestling.
andquotIand’ve kind of been thrust into the spotlight. When I got out of college, I realized I was good and I had something special. But I never would have imagined Iand’d be the best wrestler the worldand’s seen in a long time,andquot Burroughs said matter-of-factly Thursday after competing in an exhibition in Times Square. andquotThatand’s really tough to be put in that position. I really had to be groomed into this position that Iand’m in now, and I think Iand’ve done pretty well.andquot
The US beat Cuba 9-4 on a chilly evening in what has become an annual event at various New York City landmarks to benefit youth wrestling organization Beat the Streets. As a New Jersey native, Burroughs particularly loves the location.
Planning for this yearand’s exhibition started before Decemberand’s announcement that the United States and Cuba were moving to restore diplomatic relations. While the countries are used to competing against each other in the sport, wrestlers and coaches on both sides were pleased to get a chance to come together in such a high-profile setting.
Burroughs beat Luis Esteban Quintana Martinez by technical fall at 163 pounds to wrap up Thursdayand’s matches. Since his victory in London, heand’s gotten married and become a father. His son is 10 months old, and for now the family is making sacrifices as Burroughs prepares for next yearand’s Rio Olympics.
andquotOnce youand’ve had that feeling and that emotion captured in that moment of jubilation on top of the podium, youand’re going to spend your whole life chasing it again,andquot he said.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman