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Boxing at the 1968 Ciudad de México Summer Games:

Men's Welterweight

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Host City: Ciudad de México, Mexico
Venue(s): Mexico Arena, Ciudad de México
Date Started: October 13, 1968
Date Finished: October 26, 1968
Format: Single elimination tournament.

Gold: GDR Manfred Wolke
Silver: CMR Joseph Bessala
Bronze: ARG Mario Guilloti
URS Volodymyr Musalimov


This was a wide-open class with no well-known champions. The final came down to Cameroon's [Joseph Bessala], who had won all his early bouts easily, and had won the 1965 All-Africa Games and 1966 African Championships. He was pitted against [Manfred Wolke] of the GDR, with Wolke winning by majority decision, 4-1. Bessala was a Cameroonian hero and was given a car and a house for his efforts. David Wallechinsky in The Complete Book of the Olympics tells the story of the house, " … Bessala returned to find his house occupied by a stranger – and realized that he had forgotten to ask for official papers for the house. Bessala was given a second house by the state, but was evicted without explanation several years later." Bessala fought professionally from 1969-78, winning 14 fights, losing 2, with one draw. In 1978 he won the African Boxing Union welterweight title by decision over Bechir Boundka, but lost his next fight for that title to Mimoun Mohatar, and then retired. Wolke came back to box at the 1972 Olympics but lost in an early round and then became a coach.

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Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Manfred Wolke 25 East Germany GDR Gold
2 Joseph Bessala 27 Cameroon CMR Silver
3T Volodymyr Musalimov 23 Soviet Union URS Bronze
3T Mario Guilloti 22 Argentina ARG Bronze
5T Celal Sandal 27 Turkey TUR
5T Alfonso Ramírez 25 Mexico MEX
5T Armando Muniz 22 United States USA
5T Victor Zilberman 21 Romania ROU
9T Ivan Kiryakov 25 Bulgaria BUL
9T Expedito Alencar 22 Brazil BRA
9T Evangelos Oikonomakos 23 Greece GRE
9T José Manuel Durán 23 Spain ESP
9T Max Hebeisen 21 Switzerland SUI
9T Donato Paduano 19 Canada CAN
9T István Gáli 25 Hungary HUN
9T Julius Luipa 20 Zambia ZAM
17T Aaron Popoola 26 Ghana GHA
17T Bohumil Němeček 30 Czechoslovakia TCH
17T Andrés Molina 23 Cuba CUB
17T Tadesse Gebregiorgis 30 Ethiopia ETH
17T Marco Scano 23 Italy ITA
17T Park Gu-Il 24 South Korea KOR
17T Alan Tottoh 23 Great Britain GBR
17T Dieter Kottysch 25 West Germany FRG
17T Marian Kasprzyk 29 Poland POL
17T Mohamed Bouchara Morocco MAR
17T Fidelis Onye Som 23 Nigeria NGR
17T Andrew Kajjo 20 Uganda UGA
17T Jørgen Hansen 25 Denmark DEN
17T Yvon Mariolle 22 France FRA
17T Luis González 19 Chile CHI
32T Mauri Saarivainio 22 Finland FIN
32T Rabah Labiod 20 Algeria ALG