Taxi driver returns Cuello’s WBC silver belt
SINGAPORE, Singapore – Late Monday night, October 8, Denver “The Excitement” Cuello claimed he fell asleep in a taxi cab from Cubao, Quezon City en route to the Sta. Lucia East area and left his bag in the vehicle.
Inside the bag was a polo shirt he wore to a TV guesting and his most prized possession – the WBC Silver Minimumweight Championship Belt he won from Carlos Perez last year via 1st round knockout in Mexico.
After a lengthy two day search, Cuello’s nightmare finally ended early Wednesday morning, October 10. Taxi driver Pepito Sumalinog brought the Binanongan, Rizal native’s precious title belt to the dzBB radio station after realizing that his passenger was one of Philippine boxing’s most ferocious fighters.
“Siguro naghahanap ang may-ari nito, (Someone must be looking for this),” Sumalinog said during the radio interview.
As soon as the belt was returned to Cuello, the fighter thanked the cab driver on the radio airwaves.
“Nagpapasalamat ako sa mahal na Panginoon na may taxi driver na pag nakakita ng gamit, sinasauli. Maraming salamat sa inyo Mang Pepito, (Thank God that there is a taxi driver who is willing to return missing items. Thank you Mang Pepito),” said Cuello.
Sumalinog failed to immediately recognize Denver Cuello as he rode inside his taxi cab. Only after hearing about the news the next day did he realize the situation he was in.
“Nang malaman ko si Denver pala siya, nakababa na sila. Hindi ako nakaalis agad, di ko rin alam may naiwan (As soon as I found out it was Denver, they had already alighted. I didn’t leave right away, I also didn’t realize right away that they had left something),” said Sumalinog.
The WBC Silver Minimumweight title belt is said to be worth around P2-million pesos. When asked if he ever thought of keeping the belt for himself, Sumalinog said no.
This could be the closest Cuello ever gets to actually losing this title belt because nobody in and around his weight division is willing to go up against him in the ring.
Cuello is currently riding an 11-fight win streak featuring 10 vicious knockouts and is immensely popular in Mexico as well, due to his fan-friendly fighting style.
When his WBC belt went missing, Cuello’s manager Aljoe Jaro consoled the fighter and advised him to just forget about the incident altogether.
“I told him, why don’t you just win another one?” said Jaro.
Denver Cuello is currently being groomed for a long-awaited title shot in the coming months. - Rappler.com