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Merv Wood

Full name: Mervyn Thomas "Merv" Wood
Gender: Male
Born: April 30, 1917 in Kensington, New South Wales, Australia
Died: August 19, 2006 in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Affiliations: NSW Police Rowing Club, Glebe (AUS)
Country: AUS Australia
Sport: Rowing

Medals: 1 Gold, 1 Silver, 1 Bronze (3 Total)

Biography

Mervyn Wood began his rowing career as a sweep oarsman, rowing in seat five in the 1936 Olympics with the New South Wales eight which dominated Australian rowing for years. He would certainly have competed in the Olympics in both 1940 and 1944 but for the war. Still he competed in the Olympics through 1956, one of the longest careers ever. In 1948, Wood, by then a sculler, won the great double of the Olympic single sculls championship and the Diamond Sculls at Henley. In 1952, Wood lost the Olympic sculls title to Yury Tyukalov, but he again won the Diamond Sculls. Although Wood still attempted to row singles, he was unable to overcome Australia's new great, Stuart MacKenzie, and the remainder of his international appearances were in doubles. In 1956, Wood and Murray Riley won a bronze medal at the Olympics in the doubles, and in 1958, Wood paired with MacKenzie to win a silver medal at the British Empire and Commonwealth Games. In the 1950 British Empire Games he won the gold medal in the single sculls and in the double sculls (with Riley). Four years later in the 1954 British Empire and Commonwealth Games Wood won the gold medal in the double sculls (again with Riley) and in the coxed fours and in the 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games Wood won silver in the double sculls (with MacKenzie). Wood was a police officer as a career, and in 1977 became Commissioner of the New South Wales police force (1976-79). Wood's 1956 doubles partner, Riley, was also a policeman, but after he left the force he became an international drug smuggler. The controversy this caused led Wood to stepdown as Commissioner in 1979.

Results

Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1936 Summer 19 Berlin Rowing Men's Coxed Eights Australia AUS 2 h1 r2/3
1948 Summer 31 London Rowing Men's Single Sculls Australia AUS 1 Gold
1952 Summer 35 Helsinki Rowing Men's Single Sculls Australia AUS 2 Silver
1956 Summer 39 Melbourne Rowing Men's Double Sculls Australia AUS 3 Bronze

Men's Single Sculls

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Phase Unit T
1948 Summer 31 London Rowing Australia AUS Final Round 7:24.4
1948 Summer 31 London Rowing Australia AUS Semi-Finals Heat Three 8:08.5
1948 Summer 31 London Rowing Australia AUS Round One Heat One 7:25.9
1952 Summer 35 Helsinki Rowing Australia AUS Final Round 8:14.5
1952 Summer 35 Helsinki Rowing Australia AUS Semi-Finals Repêchage Heat One 7:45.5
1952 Summer 35 Helsinki Rowing Australia AUS Semi-Finals Heat One 8:02.5
1952 Summer 35 Helsinki Rowing Australia AUS Round One Heat Two 7:44.1

Men's Double Sculls

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Partner Phase Unit T
1956 Summer 39 Melbourne Rowing Australia AUS Murray Riley Final Round 7:37.4
1956 Summer 39 Melbourne Rowing Australia AUS Murray Riley Round One Repêchage Heat One 8:12.2
1956 Summer 39 Melbourne Rowing Australia AUS Murray Riley Round One Heat Two 7:01.2

Men's Coxed Eights

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Phase Unit T
1936 Summer 19 Berlin Rowing Australia AUS Semi-Finals Heat One 6:55.1
1936 Summer 19 Berlin Rowing Australia AUS Round One Heat Two 6:21.9
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