Host City: Berlin, Germany
Venue(s): Germany Hall, Berlin
Date Started: August 10, 1936
Date Finished: August 15, 1936
Format: Single elimination tournament.
The welterweight division had no clear favourite although the German fighter, Micheal Murach, was expected to perform well in front of a home audience. Imre Mandi of Hungary and Cook of Australia were also expected to put in strong performances.
Mandi’s victory over the US boxer Chester Rutecki was hotly disputed by the American team management, Mandi hit the canvas in the first round and was warned for fouling on four occasions but won the decision. US boxing coach Johnny Behr was quoted as saying “This beats the Olympic record for terrible decisions” and the US boxing team withdrew from the Olympics, only to reconsider their decision an hour later. Another controversy occurred in the very first bout of the competition, when Uruguay’s Costanzo was disqualified in his match against Fritz of France, his supporters surrounded the ring and threatened to slit the referee’s throat.
Finland’s Sten Suvio was not blessed with an easy draw, he faced Cook and Mandi in successive rounds but managed to gain the decision over both. After a semi-final victory over the eventual bronze medal winner, Pedersen of Denmark, he found himself facing Murach in the final.
Very much the outsider in the final, Suvio bided his time in the first three minutes as Murach launched his attacks. Suvio’s opportunity came halfway through the second round; a hard right hand stopped the German in his tracks and changed the course of the fight. The Finn began to dominate, landing punch after punch and Murach briefly visited the canvas as he tired badly. Suvio’s victory was the first gold medal victory by a Finnish boxer.
Micheal Murach went on to defeat Mandi in the final of the 1937 European Championship but was to die fighting on the Eastern Front in 1941, Sven Suvio fought in the Finnish army but survived to resume his modestly successful career as a professional. Raul Rodriguez of Argentina, who lost in the last eight became professional middleweight champion of South America.
|5T||Simplicio de Castro||22||Philippines||PHI|
|9T||Walter Pack||21||Great Britain||GBR|
|9T||Chester Rutecki||19||United States||USA|
|9T||Tom Arbuthnott||25||New Zealand||NZL|