August 4, 2000
by Lyn Sherwood
Spanish Matador Antonio Barrera, the revelation of the 2000 Tijuana season, turned in another triumphant afternoon, last Sunday, winning three ears and leaving the ring upon the shoulders of the fans, according to Tijuana correspondent Gary Sloan.
Playing to a half-filled plaza de toros, Barrera alternated with Jorge Mora and Jeronimo, facing a handsome set of bulls from Celia de Barbabosa.
Mora received the best bulls, yet did little with them. He gave a lackluster performance to his first toro, had troubles killing, heard an aviso, and was boo'ed by the crowd. He showed a few details with his second, killed on his second entry, and was applauded.
Geronimo gave excellent Verónicas to both of his bulls, but his faenas were less than successful, for his timing seemed to be off. His muleta played either too slowly or too rapidly for his bulls. He did fairly well with his second bull, killed well, and cut one ear. The surprise was that he killed well. He hasn't been known as a great swordsman.
Antonio Barrera's first bull suffered some nerve damage and was replaced by a toro that didn't offer much opportunity. Nevertheless, Barrera jumped all over it, turning in the best faena of the season, perhaps of many seasons. He did several series en redondo, wrapping the bull around his body in 360-degree muletazos. He killed with one thrust and a descabello, cut two ears and heard heavy petition for the tail.
With his second, the worst bull of the day, the Spaniard dragged a good faena, demonstrating that every bull has its own lídia. He killed on the second entry and won another ear.
Banderillero Pablo Mira-montes, who places sticks for Barrera, was given an ovation for an outstanding placement.
Mexican Matador Curro Rivera, one of the big stars of the `70s in plazas de toros throughout the world, has decided to make a comeback. He will again don the suit of lights Aug. 27, in Plaza de Toros El Paseo Fermín Rivera, in San Luis Potosi. Curro is the son of the great, retired matador Fermín Rivera.
Franklin Gutierrez, sword handler for Spanish Matador Enrique Ponce, was gored last Sunday in Tudela, when a bull jumped over the barrera and nailed him with two gorings in the buttocks.
In a mixed card in Nuevo Leon, Enrique Calvo "El Cali" faced three bulls, due to an injury to novillero Diego Gonzá-lez, receiving a vuelta for his first performance, two ears for his second, and symbolic ears and tail for his third, which was granted the indulto. The bulls were from Manuel Orbes e Hijos.
Diego Gonzalez was applauded for the only bull that he killed. He received a hard golpe in the sternum and was carried to the infirmary.
Novillero "Guerrita Chico" was applauded for his first and received a vuelta for his second performance of the afternoon.
In Monterrey, last Sunday, novillero Oscar López Rivera heard an aviso following his performance to his first bull and was applauded for his second.
Rafael Ortega was "discreet" with both of his bulls, which is to say that he didn't try very hard. And Mauro Lizardo saved the afternoon in Plaza Monumental Lorenzo Garza by winning an ear from each of his novillos.
The bulls were from Campo Hermoso, were good looking, but difficult, and one animal from Santo Domingo, which was manso.
Still another scandal has fallen upon Mexico City's "La Plaza Mexico." A herd of bulls, fought July 23, were afforded postmortem inspections by veterinarians, who determined that the horns of the bulls of Guanamé had been shaved. Everybody involved is playing the "Who, Me?" game, with nobody accepting responsibility and everybody pointing fingers of blame.
In the meantime, the novillada of last Sunday in La Plaza Mexico, the world's largest place de toros, novillos of Zacatepec were presented for Manolo Lizardo, who was applauded; Valente Alanis, who received polite applause; and Guillermo Veloz "El Pausado," who earned the only ear of the day, from his first novillo. He also suffered a goring in the right thigh, leaving two trajectories of 15 centimeters each.
The Mexican press didn't seem to have any response to how Lizardo could have fought in Monterrey and La Plaza Mexico on the same afternoon.