updated 8/25/2008 12:14:15 PM ET 2008-08-25T16:14:15

Fidel Castro says corrupt judges are to blame for Cuba’s sub-par showing at the Beijing Olympics.

The ailing, 82-year-old ex-president also says he wants big changes in Olympic training on the communist-run island.

Castro alleges that judges blatantly stole semifinal fights from two Cuban boxers, and that a judge must have been bribed in the case of Angel Matos, who kicked a referee in the face after he was disqualified in a bronze-medal taekwondo match.

Taekwondo officials want Matos and his coach banned for life from the sport. But Castro suggested in an essay published Monday that a “mafia” succeeded in “laughing at the rules of the Olympic Committee.” Cuba won two gold medals in China, down from nine in Athens.

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