| Event type

Featherweight (≤57 kilograms), Men

Date28 July – 2 August 1952
LocationMessuhalli I, Helsinki
Participants30 from 30 countries
FormatSingle elimination tournament.

The featherweight division was the most closely contested at the Helsinki Olympics with over a third of the bouts being decided by a split decision of the judges. The man who survived the action unscathed was 23-year-old university student Ján Zachara of Czechoslovakia. Zachara survived three successive fights from quarter-final onwards when one of the judges decided he had lost whilst the other two declared him the victor. He seemed especially lucky to defeat European champion Joseph Ventaja in a hotly disputed semi-final bout. Zachara, a locksmith by profession, won the gold by defeating Sergio Caprari of Italy. This was the only major tournament title for the Slovakian Zachara who returned to unsuccessfully defend his title in 1956.

1Ján ZacharaTCHGold
2Sergio CaprariITASilver
=3Joseph VentajaFRABronze
=3Len LeischingRSABronze
=5Len WaltersCAN
=5Lech DrogoszPOL
=5János ErdeiHUN
=5Edson BrownUSA
=9Pentti NiinivuoriFIN
=9Pedro GalassoBRA
=9Gheorghe IlieROU
=9Sydney GrevePAK
=9Willi RothGER
=9Stevan RedliYUG
=9Kurt SchirraSAA
=9Seo Byeong-RanKOR
=17Ba Nyein MYA
=17Toshihito IshimaruJPN
=17Benoy BoseIND
=17Percy LewisGBR
=17Yury SokolovURS
=17Ángel LeyesARG
=17Salah AbbasEGY
=17Don McDonnellAUS
=17Emanoul AghasiIRI
=17Tommy ReddyIRL
=17Georgi MalezanovBUL
=17Luis ArangurenVEN
=17Åke WärnströmSWE
=17Fredy WillommetSUI
DNSHenry JayasuriyaSRI
DNSPierre RichaudFRA
DNSPeter BranderGBR
DNSBobby BickleUSA
DNSTaisto TuominenFIN

Round One

Date28 July 1952
FormatWinner of each match advanced to the second round.
Match #128 JulSergio CaprariITA
Match #228 JulPentti NiinivuoriFIN
Match #328 JulLech DrogoszPOLDecisionBa Nyein MYA
Match #428 JulPedro GalassoBRADecisionToshihito IshimaruJPN
Match #528 JulEdson BrownUSADecisionBenoy BoseIND
Match #628 JulGheorghe IlieROUDecisionPercy LewisGBR
Match #728 JulJoseph VentajaFRADecisionYury SokolovURS
Match #828 JulSydney GrevePAKKnock-outÁngel LeyesARG
Match #928 JulLen WaltersCANDecisionSalah AbbasEGY
Match #1028 JulWilli RothGERDecisionDon McDonnellAUS
Match #1128 JulLen LeischingRSADecisionEmanoul AghasiIRI
Match #1228 JulStevan RedliYUGReferee stops contestTommy ReddyIRL
Match #1328 JulJános ErdeiHUNDecisionGeorgi MalezanovBUL
Match #1428 JulKurt SchirraSAADecisionLuis ArangurenVEN
Match #1528 JulJán ZacharaTCHDecisionÅke WärnströmSWE
Match #1628 JulSeo Byeong-RanKORDecisionFredy WillommetSUI

Round Two

Date29 – 30 July 1952
FormatWinner of each match advanced to the quarter-finals.
Match #1Sergio CaprariITADecisionPentti NiinivuoriFIN
Match #2Lech DrogoszPOLDecisionPedro GalassoBRA
Match #3Edson BrownUSADecisionGheorghe IlieROU
Match #4Joseph VentajaFRADecisionSydney GrevePAK
Match #5Len WaltersCANDecisionWilli RothGER
Match #6Len LeischingRSADecisionStevan RedliYUG
Match #7János ErdeiHUNDecisionKurt SchirraSAA
Match #8Ján ZacharaTCHDecisionSeo Byeong-RanKOR


Date31 July 1952
FormatWinner of each match advanced to the semi-finals.
Match #131 JulLen LeischingRSADecisionLen WaltersCAN
Match #231 JulSergio CaprariITADecisionLech DrogoszPOL
Match #331 JulJán ZacharaTCHDecisionJános ErdeiHUN
Match #431 JulJoseph VentajaFRADecisionEdson BrownUSA


Date1 August 1952
FormatWinner of each match advanced to the final match.
Match #101 AugSergio CaprariITADecisionJoseph VentajaFRA
Match #201 AugJán ZacharaTCHDecisionLen LeischingRSA

Final Round

Date2 August 1952
Match 1/202 AugJán ZacharaTCHDecisionSergio CaprariITA