Host City: London, Great Britain
Venue(s): Empress Hall, Earls Court Exhibition Centre, Kensington, London; Wembley Arena, Wembley, London
Date Started: August 7, 1948
Date Finished: August 13, 1948
Format: Single elimination tournament.
The change of weight limit for this class proved beneficial to the Czechoslovak boxer, Július Torma, for it allowed him to make the welterweight division and not fight at middleweight where the opposition was expected to be stronger. Torma’s charge to the title was nearly ended in the 2nd round by the skull of his Canadian opponent. Angered by what he considered the unsportsmanlike behaviour of Gerald Blackburn before the fight, Torma bludgeoned his opponent throughout but the coup-de-grace, a left hook, fractured a bone in his hand. The defensive skills of Torma proved sufficient to bring him to the final and a meeting with Hank Herring of the USA.
In a disappointing Olympic Games for the American team, Herring was the only boxer to reach a final but he couldn’t turn silver into gold and Czechoslovakia celebrated their first Olympic boxing title. Torma was born in Hungary and moved to Czechoslovakia after the war. He went on to win the 1949 European title and retired after career of 997 fights with just 60 losses. He won 13 Hungarian and 10 Czech titles. He returned to the Olympic arena twice more but was eliminated at the quarter-final stage on both occasions.
Alessandro D'Ottavio of Italy, the bronze medal winner, was most successful as a professional, winning his national light-heavyweight title whilst Gunnar Hansen, a first round loser, became a legendary figure in Norwegian boxing and was awarded the Olympic Order in bronze for his achievements in and out of the ring.
|2||Hank Herring||26||United States||USA||Silver|
|4||Duggie Du Preez||21||South Africa||RSA|
|9T||Alex Obeysekera||Sri Lanka||SRI|
|9T||Max Shacklady||29||Great Britain||GBR|
|17T||Anwar Pasha Turki||21||Pakistan||PAK|
|DNS||Johnny Ryan||29||Great Britain||GBR|
|DNS||Ross Virgo||18||United States||USA|