Robeisy Ramirez talks Luis Alberto Lopez, living in America & seeing his daughter

For many people who live in the U.S., freedom is often taken for granted. Those who emigrate from another country on the other hand, especially one with a communist government, tend to make the most of the opportunity presented to them. That has been the case for 29-year-old WBO featherweight champion Robeisy Ramirez (13-1, 8 KOs). Ramirez emigrated from Cuba five years ago with a dream of becoming successful and eventually reuniting with the daughter he left behind.

The two-time Olympic gold medalist was riding a big wave coming into the pro ranks, but reality quickly slapped him in the face when he lost his debut fight by way of a split decision in August 2019. It was the type of wake-up call he needed, and he has remained undefeated since. In April, Ramirez defeated Isaac Dogboe to win the vacant WBO featherweight title, and Ramirez would achieve one of his goals: to win a world title.

His other goal was to see his daughter in person, not having seen her since leaving the Cuban National Team in Mexico for the opportunity to make it in America. Although times have changed and being apart from loved ones is a little less stressful with video chat options, there is still that emptiness that you feel inside when you are unable to hold that person close to you.

In August, Ramirez finally saw his daughter, and months later still gets visibly choked up about it. “It was a moment that no words could express how I felt,” said Ramirez. “The same five years I’ve been in this country is the same five years since I last saw my daughter. When I left her, she was so small; now she is almost my height (smiles). The hug she gave me was strong and was a moment I had been waiting for a long time. I was so happy to see her and can’t wait for another opportunity to do so again.”

While not seeing his daughter has been challenging enough, living in the U.S. has its own challenges. “I’m easy when it comes to getting accustomed to things here in the U.S. It’s a difficult country to live in, but when you do things the right way, everything works out. I come from a country (Cuba) that is suppressed and with a lot of problems. I came here to the U.S. and witnessed all this freedom, but you can get wrapped up in things when you aren’t doing what you are supposed to be doing.”

In July, Ramirez traveled to Japan for the first time, and it was an experience he truly enjoyed. Aside from earning a TKO victory over Satoshi Shimizu, Ramirez loved how he was received by the Japanese people. He mentioned being treated as if he were right at home, and if allowed to do it again, he would not hesitate to jump on the opportunity.

After that impressive victory, fight fans started to play matchmaker. They wanted to see Ramirez fight IBF champion Luis Alberto Lopez (29-2, 16 KOs). The two fighters played along, exchanging comments on social media. In September, Lopez successfully defended his title against Joet Gonzalez, and the fans' conversations grew louder for that unification fight. Some even said it was being discussed within Top Rank. 

Ramirez smiled when asked about that fight, as he knows everyone is asking for it, telling ProBoxTV “That fight was never discussed. The fans had imagined it happening, but we never really discussed it. I don’t have any issues fighting him. I would like to fight him so I can shut his mouth. Not just him, as he doesn’t worry me, but more so his team, who talks a lot. I’m ready to fight with the best.”

On Saturday, following the Heisman Award Ceremony on ESPN, Ramirez headlines against the undefeated Rafael Espinoza (21-0, 18 KOs). The 29-year-old Espinoza is a tough fighter, with only three of his wins going to the scorecards. Ramirez must once again prove that he is levels above his opponent and is ready for even bigger fights. “It’s going to be a great fight,” said Ramirez. “Since it was announced, I’ve told my fans not to miss this fight. He has a good record and name and is Mexican, so we must come prepared.” As he heads towards fight night, Ramirez knows that the rest of the featherweight division will be tuned in, and his message to them is to “Be Ready” in 2024.

Ramirez is not only fighting to defend his title but also to achieve his next goal in life, which is to have his daughter by his side permanently. One thing is for sure: Ramirez isn’t taking the opportunity to be in this country for granted and wants to work hard to provide his family a better life than he previously had to endure.