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Boxing at the 1948 London Summer Games:

Men's Welterweight

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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.

Gold: TCH Július Torma
Silver: USA Hank Herring
Bronze: ITA Alessandro D'Ottavio


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.

View a Phase of this EventFinal StandingsFinal RoundSemi-FinalsQuarter-FinalsRound TwoRound One

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Július Torma 26 Czechoslovakia TCH Gold
2 Hank Herring 26 United States USA Silver
3 Alessandro D'Ottavio 20 Italy ITA Bronze
4 Duggie Du Preez 21 South Africa RSA
5T Billy Boyce 21 Australia AUS
5T Eladio Herrera 18 Argentina ARG
5T Zygmunt Chychła 21 Poland POL
5T Aurelio Díaz 25 Spain ESP
9T Léon Roller 20 Luxembourg LUX
9T Feliciano Rosano 23 Uruguay URU
9T Humberto Loayza 22 Chile CHI
9T Peter Foran Ireland IRL
9T Alex Obeysekera Sri Lanka SRI
9T Pierre Hernandez 19 France FRA
9T Max Shacklady 29 Great Britain GBR
9T Clifford Blackburn 20 Canada CAN
17T Gharib Afifi Egypt EGY
17T Édouard Bombart 22 Belgium BEL
17T Anwar Pasha Turki 21 Pakistan PAK
17T Frits Wijngaard 22 Netherlands NED
17T Gunnar Hansen 32 Norway NOR
17T George Issabeg 17 Iran IRI
17T Christian Kristensen 22 Denmark DEN
17T Robert Cranston 19 India IND
17T Gusztáv Bene 36 Hungary HUN
17T Mariano Vélez Philippines PHI