Host City: Los Angeles, United States
Venue(s): Grand Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California
Date Started: August 4, 1932
Date Finished: August 7, 1932
Format: Scoring by negative points, with negative points given for any result short of a fall. Accumulation of 5 negative points eliminated the wrestler.
The last three European Championships had been won by Sweden’s Erik Malmberg (1930), a top tactician, and Germany’s Ede Sperling (1927, 1929, 1931). Sperling also returned to Los Angeles as the silver medalist in featherweight in Amsterdam. Unfortunately, with only six entrants, they were drawn against each other in the first round, with Malmberg winning by decision. Sperling won his next two matches by decision, with his five bad points eliminating him, giving him the bronze medal. Malmberg continued to win, earning the gold, defeating Denmark’s Abraham Kurland in the final match.
This was the end of the line for Malmberg in his international career, which had begun back in 1921 at the World Championships, where he won bronze as a featherweight. He was also bronze medalist at the 1924 Olympics and the 1925 Europeans in featherweight. As a lightweight wrestler Malmberg won European titles in 1929 in freestyle lightweight and 1930 in Greco lightweight. Sperling continued to compete internationally through 1938, but never made another major podium. Abraham Kurland was mostly unknown in 1932 but he would later win two silvers (1934-35) and a bronze (1934 freestyle) at the European Championships, and would actually compete at the 1948 Olympics in London.