ROBERTO DURAN is a sporting legend. Often called the greatest boxer of all time, he held world titles at four different weights and is the only professional in history to have fought in five different decades. His bouts with fellow greats like Sugar Ray Leonard, Thomas Hearns and Marvin Hagler have gone down in fistic folklore and his pro record of 104 wins (69 by KO) in 120 fights puts him in an elite group of fighters. They call him Manos de Piedra: “Hands of Stone”.
Now American journalist Christian Giudice has written the first – and definitive – story of Duran’s extraordinary life both in and out of the ring. He has interviewed the fighter himself, his family and closest friends and scores of his opponents to separate truth from myth and get to the heart of one of the most intriguing sports stars of modern times.
Duran was born in utter poverty in the Panama Canal Zone, the illegitimate son of a serving US soldier and a local girl. He grew up in the streets, fighting to survive. His talent with his fists was soon apparent, and on one fabled occasion he even knocked down a horse with a single punch for a bet. He grew into a fighter’s fighter, and his willingness to take on anyone, anywhere, anytime and never take a step back made him a huge favorite.
From his wild early bouts to his stunning boxing debut in New York, Giudice traces the blazing trail of his career: the controversial title win over Scot Ken Buchanan; his unification of the lightweight crown against great rival Esteban DeJesus; his glorious defeat of Ray Leonard and the subsequent debacle of the No Más encounter; his ferocious comeback and redemption, and the long, eventful twilight of his matchless career. Here also are both the public and private sides of Duran: his volatility, his kindness and reckless generosity, his partying, his links with the notorious regime of General Noriega, and above all his chilling love of battle.
‘What a story!’ SCOTLAND ON SUNDAY
‘A riveting read from the first page to the last.’ THE RING
‘Recommended.’ THE OBSERVER
‘The first – and definitive – account of Duran’s extraordinary life both in and out of the ring.’BOXING DIGEST
‘A brilliantly detailed biography.’ THE SUNDAY TIMES
‘A compelling story.’ THE SUN
‘Christian Giudice has succeeded brilliantly in separating the myth from the legend and produced a book that serves only to enhance further the reputation of an already astonishing fighter…Hands of Stone is the dazzling first, and no doubt for a long time to come, definitive, account of a breathtaking fighter and a remarkable man.’ THE INDEPENDENT
‘A cracking book.’ DAILY STAR
‘Duran’s 120-bout career is vividly chronicled.’ THE INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY
‘If you buy only one boxing book this year, Hands of Stone should be it.’ BOXING MONTHLY
‘A must for all fight fans.’ LIVERPOOL ECHO
‘A gripping biography. Every page will keep readers enthralled.’
DUBLIN EVENING HERALD
‘Guidice’s biography is a compelling book; at times it’s a profoundly detailed reconstruction of Duran’s world.’ BELLES LETTRES, A LITERARY REVIEW
About the author:
Christian Giudice is a freelance sportswriter and a regular contributor to Boxing Digest and numerous other newspapers and magazines. He also contributes to one of the leading Boxing web sites www.fightnews.com. Christian graduated from Temple with an MA in Journalism. He lives in Haddonfield, New Jersey. He is currently working on a second book.