There have been boxers that have tried other sports and those from one sport to boxing like Ed “Too Tall” Jones and when Wilt “The Stilt” Chamberlain almost debuted against Muhammad Ali but wisely changed his mind after Ali whispered in his ear “Timber!”
Back on February 2, 1964, at the Ballbastra Bullring in Huesca, Spain, Spain’s Luis Folledo entered the bullring as a Matador. At that time he was the Spanish champion and his record was 79-3-1. In his most recent bout he lost to legendary 3-time Olympic Gold Medalist Hungary’s Lazlo Papp, 23-0-2, in a EBU European Middleweight title bout.
Though Folledo was scheduled to fight some three week later on February 24th against Soleymane Diallo, 29-0-1, in Paris, FR, he entered the bullring. The Spanish Boxing Federation threatened to take away his boxing license due to this. So, he gave up bull fighting to proceed with his fight against Diallo scoring a win over ten rounds.
Folledo would go onto win his next fourteen fights before losing to then WBA & WBC World Super Welterweight champion and future World Middleweight champion Nino Benvenutti, 58-0, for the vacant EBU European Middleweight title being stopped in 5 rounds in Italy in October of 1965.
Folledo would end up winning his last thirteen fights after failing to win the vacant EBU European Middleweight title to Carlo Duran, 45-7.
Of his six losing bout’s Folledo reversed one against Sugar Boy Nando, 62-35-6. He reversed his draw in a rematch with Francisco Leon, 24-14-7. He was 42-0-1 before losing for the first time to Denmark’s Chris Christensen, 40-13-3, in Copenhagen, DK. Three fights later he lost to Brian Curvis, 18-0, of Wales, in the UK. He would go on to win his next 35 fights before losing to Papp.
Some of Folledo’s biggest wins were over Fred Galiana, 116-17-13, of Spain, twice. Winning the Spanish Middeweight title from Diego Infantes, 41-6-2 and defeating Francesco Fiori, 41-4-2.
Folledo would retire in May of 1969 after he failed a medical examination. His final record was 129-6-1, with 60 stoppages. He passed away in May of 2017 at the age of 79.