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Posted January 19, 2005 by Dana Garrett in Cuban Sports

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Jan. 18, 2005
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Olympic champion Osleidys Menendez was named Cuba’s female Athlete of the Year in 2004 in a ceremony Monday night in the Garcia Lorca Hall of the Grand Theater here, according to local press reports on Tuesday.

Javelin thrower Menendez, who won the Athens Olympic gold medalwith a throw just one centimeter short of her own world record of 71.54 meters, topped the poll for the award.

Boxer Mario Kindelan, the Olympic champion in the 60kg categoryin Athens, received the award for the male Athlete of the Year.

Also awarded were baseball player Ariel Pestano, the most outstanding among the members of the national team, and volleyballplayer Zoila Barros, the key player of the national team which wonthe bronze medal in Athens.

The awards of Most Relevant Collective Sport went to baseball, Best Individual Discipline to boxing, and the Best Rookie to youngbaseball pitcher Danny Betancourt.

Other athletes who received diplomas and trophies were Olympic champions Yandro Quintana (wrestling), Yumisleidis Cumba (shot put), and boxers Yan Barthelemi, Yuriolkis Gamboa, Odlanier Solis and Guillermo Rigondeaux.

Completing the list are chess player Leinier Dominguez, who performed well in the World Cup event in Tripoli, Libya and the Olympiad in Spain, as well as taekwondo master Yanelis Labrada, hammer thrower Yipsi Moreno and judoka Daima Beltran, all of them winners of silver medals in Athens.

The award of Human Will was presented to Ana Jimenez, as the Best Handicapped Athlete, and in the Special Category, the distinction went to Erick Hernandez, holder of Guiness records in soccer ball mastering.

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