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Boxing at the 1936 Berlin Summer Games:

Men's Flyweight

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Events:
Phases:

Host City: Berlin, Germany
Venue(s): Germany Hall, Berlin
Date Started: August 10, 1936
Date Finished: August 15, 1936
Format: Single elimination tournament.

Gold: GER Willy Kaiser
Silver: ITA Gavino Matta
Bronze: USA Lou Laurie

Summary

Two men who had been looked at as possible champions were not eligible for the trip to Berlin, Great Britain’s Pat Palmer, the 1934 European and British Empire champion had recently turned professional as had Johnny Marceline, the US champion of 1935.

The new regulations concerning weighing-in caused more difficulties in the flyweight division than in any other. A number of fancied competitors were forced to move up a weight class in order to avoid the possibility of disqualification. This made the prediction of medal hopefuls very difficult although Lauria of the USA, the Frenchman Fayaud, Munag of the Philippines and the Argentine Carlomagno were touted by some as possible champions.

The 18-year old American Lou Lauria, the youngest member of the US team in Berlin, caught the eye in his first round points victory over Bezděk of Czechoslovakia with his speed and accuracy. After a bye in the opening round, the German fighter Willy Kaiser was also impressive as he forced the referee to stop his second round bout against the Chilean Lopez to save the South American from unnecessary punishment. Kaiser continued his progress with a win over the Uruguayan Fidel Tricánico in the last eight; Tricánico had been fortunate enough to gain a bye in the first round then saw his prospective second round opponent from Peru withdraw in protest at the treatment of the Peruvian football team.

The semi-final stage saw Lauria defeated by the strong Sardinian Gavino Matta in a close fight whilst Kaiser turned back the challenge of

Carlomagno of Argentina. Lauria won the bronze medal when Carlomagno withdrew and his boxing skills were recognized by the award of the inaugural Val Barker trophy, presented to the most stylish boxer in the tournament.

In the final Kaiser went on the attack from the outset, forcing the tempo at close quarters and keeping his opponent at bay. When Matta tried to fight back Kaiser pushed the pace even higher and left the Italian with cuts around both eyes. As he tried to turn the fight around Matta became desperate and was warned for fouling his opponent. Towards the end of the fight the Italian tired and Kaiser wrapped up a points decision and Germany’s first ever boxing gold.

The two men met again a year later in the European championship with the same result, although this time it was for the bronze medal rather than gold. Matta and Lauria later turned professional, the Italian winning his national title.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Willy Kaiser 24 Germany GER Gold
2 Gavino Matta 26 Italy ITA Silver
3 Lou Laurie 18 United States USA Bronze
4 Alfredo Carlomagno 18 Argentina ARG
5T Fidel Tricánico 21 Uruguay URU
5T William Passmore 21 South Africa RSA
5T Edmund Sobkowiak 22 Poland POL
5T Raoul Degryse 23 Belgium BEL
9T Guillermo López 21 Chile CHI
9T Mahmoud Ezzat 22 Egypt EGY
9T Chiyoto Nakano 23 Japan JPN
9T Asbjørn Berg-Hansen 23 Norway NOR
9T Walter Siegfried 17 Switzerland SUI
9T Felipe Nunag 20 Philippines PHI
9T Kaj Frederiksen 19 Denmark DEN
16T Erkki Savolainen 18 Finland FIN
16T Rudolf Bezděk 20 Czechoslovakia TCH
16T Alf Russell 21 Great Britain GBR
16T Henry Cooper 22 Australia AUS
16T Gaston Fayaud 21 France FRA
16T Sture Hållberg 19 Sweden SWE
16T Dumitru Panaitescu 23 Romania ROU
16T Fernand Ciatti 24 Luxembourg LUX
16T Tinus Lambillion 23 Netherlands NED