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Franklin Cisneros: “Returning to the judo national team is a desire I had in my heart”.

Franklin Amadeo Cisneros will be the novelty in the Salvadoran judo selection for the Central American and Caribbean Games San Salvador 2023, an event where the athlete based in Florida, United States, will mark his return to top competition after a break for over 10 years.

Cisneros was one of the outstanding judoists between 2002 and 2009, when he represented El Salvador in the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, today he has decided to return to the Olympic cycle competitions.

The athlete retired in 2010 when he moved to Florida, United States, where he works as a trainer at the Top Brother Gym, which manages with his wife, former wrestler Ingrid Cuellar de Cisneros, and where he has specialized in other combat sports such as Mixed Martial Arts (MMA).

It was the athlete himself who confirmed his return to the national judo team. “When I saw that the Central American and Caribbean Games were going to be held again in El Salvador, I wanted to be part of the national judo team again. I started with the national team in 2002 in the Central American and Caribbean Games and I want to retire but competing in some games. I was thinking to compete in judo and wrestling, but at the end I will only compete in judo”, he said.

Franklin will compete in the +100 kilograms category and is very excited to return to top competition.

“I am happy, I love it, because I like the sport and I do it for my country, even now I no longer live here but in the United States. To return to the judo national team is a desire I had in my heart, I asked God for it a lot and I know he is giving it to me. I waited 14 years without participating and I was training all this time in the United States, in a gym we have with my wife and where I train MMA, judo, wrestling, jiu-jitsu, boxing and I have been active”, explained the athlete.

The judoka will travel to Guatemala with the Salvadoran judo team to compete on the weekend in an international triangular tournament in which the host country and the national team from Honduras will also participate.

“I am already training with the Salvadoran Judo Federation that has Cuban coaches and I will be in the country for two weeks, then I return to my gym in the United States, and I will come to compete in the San Salvador 2023 Games. On Saturday I go to a competition in Guatemala which is preparatory for the Central American and Caribbean Games and we will see how I do”, he mentioned.

Cisneros and his wife Ingrid have lived in the United States since 2010 and the idea of returning to top competition was latent since 2020, but he says he had to wait to fix his immigration status in the United States to be able to travel and fulfill his sporting dream.

“Everything is already defined with the selection, to give it everything and to catch up, it is a new group and I come to put myself at the orders. Carlos Alarcón and Diego Turcios, who are Olympic athletes and are going to represent the country, are on the national team. I am excited and I feel at home,” he said.

Franklin’s track record includes a bronze medal in the Pan American Games Rio 2007 and third place in the Central American and Caribbean Games Cartagena 2006.

“He arrived yesterday to the country and reported to the first training session and will travel to a competition in Guatemala”, said Richard Ramirez, Manager for the Salvadoran Judo Federation.

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