July 21, 2006

Bullfight World
By Lyn Sherwood

A Great Weekend for Tijuana Aficionados

The first “mini-feria” of modern times was celebrated, last Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, in Plaza El Toreo de Tijuana Three bullfights in three days! For aficionados, it was a dream come true.

Three quarters of the plaza were filled for the Friday evening function, when three bulls of Jaime Cavazos were presented for rejoneadores Eduardo Cuevas Lebrija and Jorge Hernandez, aided by the Forcados de Mazatlán, while matadors Juan Bautista, of France, and Tijuanense César Castañeda challenged four bulls of Vicky de la Mora.

The triunfador of the evening was Juan Bautista, who cut one of only two ears. He was good with the cape, and in the third act, concentrated on the right hand side. He missed his first sword entry, losing an ear, but returned to give an excellent faena to his second bull, winning the deserved ear.

Rejoneador Jorge Hernández offered a grand performance, but lost trophies with the rejon of death. Hernandez and the bull were afforded a turn of the ring, as were the forcados.

Eduardo Cuevas didn’t have much to work with on his first bull, and complied. Then, later, Cuevas and Hernandez bought a gift bull, which they worked together, and were awarded an ear.Matador Castañeda worked hard with his lot, but heard his greatest accolades for his placements of banderillas.

Saturday’s action was highlighted by the debut of Spaniard Morante de la Puebla, who disappointed nobody, performing mano-a-mano with Alejandro Amaya, and winning three ears, according to correspondent Gary Sloan.

With his first bull, “Don Roberto”, at 470 kilos, José started with grand veronicas. Author Barnaby Conrad later commented, “the entire effort of coming to this affair was worth those three veronicas”.

In his first faena, José was very good on both sides. He finished with a good sword placement and heard applause. With his second toro, “Giraldez” (460 kilos), Morante was, once again, great with the capote, capping his veronicas with a terrific media veronica. Following the pics, he did a set of chicuelinas, that were profound. His faena was even better than had been his first. Grand muletazos on both sides, con mucho temple, a good sword, and he was awarded an ear.

With his third animal, “Cazador” (465 kilos), he really delivered the goods. Grand veronicas and another sensational media veronica. His muleta work was long and a thing of great beauty. Great work on both sides, including a set of trincherazos, was unforgetable. And then, just when we thought it couldn’t get any better, he killed recibiendo, perfectly. Two ears and a turn of the ring for “Cazador”.

Alejandro Amaya’s gave good veronicas and a fine remate to his first bull. His faena was good, very erect and proper, to both sides. But, he lost ears with the sword. His second bull provided a better opportunity in the third act, and the Tijuanense worked very well to both sides. He killed “a un tiempo” and won a well deserved ear.

But, bad luck with the sword cost him the trophies with his third bull. On the fourth attempt, he was caught and pummeled, losing a couple of teeth and suffering damage to his upper lip.

The super weekend was climaxed on Sunday, when again, the toreros were greeted by a very large crowd. Eloy Cavazos was the triunfador, winning three ears. He was superb in his efforts with cape and muleta, working with the feet together on some occasions, and feet apart on others. Naturally, his sword work was excellent.

Alejandro Amaya obviously suffering from the terrible tossing that he had received, the previous day, but his honor and love of La Fiesta inspired him to do everything that he could. He cut one ear from his first bull. His second bull lacked strength, allowing very little for the matador to accomplish.

Juan Antonio Adame came up just slightly short of realizing a grand afternoon. He opened his first faena with a péndulo that brought down the house. And, although his faena was exciting, he lost ears with the descabello. But, he returned to take an ear from his second bull, following a fine lídia to a difficult animal.

In all, a wonderful weekend!

Retired matador Jesus Solor-zano, 64, is in grave condition in a Mexico City hospital, where he is suffering a blood condition that required immediate surgery. His pancreas has been affected.

Due to a motion that was passed 74-51, June 22, by the regional parliament of Catalonia, in northern Spain, the province will extend its current legislation on animal rights to cover the formerly exempted practice of bullfighting. The impact of this latest assault on Spanish bullfighting remains to be seen.

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