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Wrestling at the 1928 Amsterdam Summer Games:

Men's Lightweight, Freestyle

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Events:
Phases:

Host City: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Venue(s): Power Sports Building, Amsterdam
Date Started: July 30, 1928
Date Finished: August 1, 1928
Format: Single-elimination tournament with separate single-elimination tournaments for second- and third-place. Second-place tournament conducted among those losing to the winner. Third-place tournament conducted among those losing to the winner or runner-up.

Gold: EST Osvald Käpp
Silver: FRA Charles Pacôme
Bronze: FIN Eino Leino

Summary

No international freestyle events had been contested since the 1924 Olympics so it was difficult to choose a favorite. Finland’s Eino Leino, who lived and wrestled in the United States, had won gold and silver medals at the 1920 and 1924 Olympics in freestyle, and had to be considered a favorite, although he had previously wrestled as a middleweight (1920) and welterweight (1924). But in the second round he lost to the unknown French wrestler Charles Pacôme, who then lost in the semi-finals to Estonian Osvald Käpp. Käpp defeated Norway’s Birger Nilsen for the gold medal, but Nilsen lost out in the second-place tournament to Pacôme who won the silver medal.

The bronze was won by Leino, who defeated Nilsen for third place. Although Pacôme had been a surprise medalist he came back at Los Angeles in 1932 and won the gold medal in this class. Käpp also competed in 1932 but failed to medal. Moving back to welterweight in 1932, Leino would win his fourth consecutive freestyle wrestling medal, with another bronze, making him the first Olympic wrestler to win medals at four Olympic Games.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Osvald Käpp 23 Estonia EST Gold
2 Charles Pacôme 25 France FRA Silver
3 Eino Leino 37 Finland FIN Bronze
4 Birger Nilsen 31 Norway NOR
5 Carlo Tesdorf Jørgensen 25 Denmark DEN
6 Clarence Berryman 21 United States USA
7 Hans Mollet Switzerland SUI
8T Jean Smet Belgium BEL
8T Isuke Shinmen 38 Japan JPN
10T Algot Malmberg 25 Sweden SWE
10T George MacKenzie 39 Great Britain GBR