Former two-time welterweight beltholder Andre Berto returned to training with Virgil Hunter on Sunday after being cleared by doctors last month following rehabilitation for an injury to his right arm, according to a release sent to RingTV.com.
In August, Berto (28-3, 22 knockouts) endured a three-and-a-half-hour surgery to repair a ruptured subscapularis (under the shoulder blade) tendon that he suffered during in July's 12th-round stoppage loss to Jesus Soto Karass, whom he dropped in the 11th round.
Berto's operation was performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache, who was also involved with the surgery that repaired Berto's ruptured left biceps in February of 2012.
A resident of Winter Haven, Fla., Berto, 30, believes that he suffered the injury in the second round, and was found to have completely torn the tendon from top to bottom. Nevertheless, he anticipates a return to the ring in the summer.
Although Berto's fifth-round knockout of Jan Zaveck earned the IBF's belt in September of 2011, his stoppage at the hands of Soto Karass was the first knockout loss his career. His other losses were by unanimous decision to Victor Ortiz and Robert Guerrero in April of 2011 and November of 2012, respectively.
On Jan. 29, Berto took part in a concussion summit at The United Nations in New York, which was also the site of Thursday's Global Ambassadors' summit geared toward ongoing relief in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake that devasted the country.
A member of the Hatian Olympic team in 2004, Berto was on hand with notables such as the grandsons of the late Nelson Mandela, the son of Bob Marley, and other professional athletes.
"The time I spent with this inspiring and passionate group of people and the opportunity to share the importance of providing the right type of assistance in Haiti was life-changing," said Berto. "I know that if we all continue to work together, we can make a real difference in Haiti and all the nations that badly need our help."
On Wednesday, Berto participated in the #C4CT Concussion Awareness Summit, being part of a panel of athletes who addressed the concussion epidemic's impact on their lives both personally and professionally. Berto and others discussed the importance of improving safety in contact sports.
Berto's other projects include working with the Haitian Boxing Federation to help young Haitian boxers follow in his footsteps at the Olympic Games, as well as the charitable organization Generosity Water, which built wells to provide drinking water for thousands of Haitians.
Photo: Naoki Fukuda