Host City: Seoul, South Korea
Venue(s): Jamsil Students' Gymnasium, Seoul Sports Complex, Seoul
Date Started: September 20, 1988
Date Finished: October 1, 1988
Format: Single elimination tournament.
|Bronze:|| Jan Dydak
As one of the few non-Cubans who had won gold at the 1986 World Championships, America's [Kenny Gould] had every reason to be the gold medal favourite in Seoul. His performances in the early rounds did little to dent American enthusiasm and when France's [Laurent Boudouani] upset [Song Gyeong-Seop] of Korea it appeared Gould would advance to the final comfortably when the two met in the semi-final. Boudouani had other ideas and, being the bigger man, bullied the more skillful American around the ring to take the decision.
Opposing the Frenchman in the final was [Robert Wangila], the African champion from Kenya. Wangila was the complete antithesis of Gould - a powerful built fighter with a massive punch. After some initial sparring the Kenyan connected with Boudouani's jaw on the two minute mark and sent him sprawling to the canvas. The Frenchman saw out the round and another big punch knocked him down again in round two and the referee stepped in to save further punishment. As of 2012 Wangila remains the only Kenyan to have won an Olympic title outside track & field athletics.
Both finalists launched professional careers albeit with very different outcomes. Wangila based himself in Las Vegas and had won 22 of his 26 bouts when he faced David Gonzales in July 1994. After being stopped in the seventh round of a brutal fight he collapsed in his dressing room and slipped into a coma. He never regained consciousness and died three days later. His body was returned but an argument between his wife and parents over whether he had converted from Christianity to Islam delayed his funeral until a court rendered its' verdict. Two years after Wangila's death Boudouani began a reign as the WBA light middleweight champion.
|3T||Kenny Gould||21||United States||USA||Bronze|
|5T||Song Gyeong-Seop||25||South Korea||KOR|
|9T||Humberto Aranda||22||Costa Rica||CRC|
|9T||Siegfried Mehnert||25||East Germany||GDR|
|9T||Maselino Masoe||22||American Samoa||ASA|
|17T||Daryl Joseph||22||Antigua and Barbuda||ANT|
|17T||Abdullah Salim Al-Barwani||Oman||OMA|
|17T||Alexander Künzler||26||West Germany||FRG|
|17T||Fidèle Mohinga||24||Central African Republic||CAF|
|17T||Vladimir Yereshchenko||26||Soviet Union||URS|
|33T||Đỗ Tiến Tuấn||21||Vietnam||VIE|
|33T||Lionel Ortíz||17||Puerto Rico||PUR|
|33T||Pedro Fria||23||Dominican Republic||DOM|