| Event type

Middleweight (≤160 pounds), Men

Date15 – 20 July 1924
LocationVélodrome d'Hiver, Paris
Participants23 from 14 countries
FormatSingle elimination tournament.

The judging of boxing, as in all sports where a degree of subjectivity is required, has a history of protest but the events in the middleweight class at the 1924 belong to the level of controversy almost of its’ own.

French hopes were dashed in the quarter-finals. Daniel Daney appeared to have outboxed his Belgian opponent but Joseph Beecken was awarded the victory. A last round in which the Frenchman briefly touched the canvas might have influenced the judges.

The favourite for the competition was though to be the reigning champion, Harry Mallin from Britain, and Mallin did indeed win his first two bouts without any great alarm. In the last eight he came up against another French fighter in Roger Brousse. Mallin appeared to most onlookers to have won the contest but Brousse was declared the victor by a 2-1 decision. By this time Mallin had already approached the referee and asked for him to examine teeth marks on his chest and whilst the referee had ignored him, the damage had been seen by a ringside official.

A Swedish member of the Fédération Internationale de Boxe Amateur (FIBA) filed a protest and an inquiry was held. Mallin’s chest was examined and it was proved that he had clearly been bitten. Brousse’s defence was that he had an unusual habit of snapping his jaw at the moment of throwing a punch and that Mallin, in defending himself against Brousse’s punches, had bumped his chest against his opponent’s mouth. The witnesses against Brousse included the Argentine he had defeated in his previous bout, who also accused the Frenchman of biting. Whilst the jury of appeal cleared Brousse of an intentional foul, they still disqualified him and advanced Mallin to the semi finals.

The announcement of Brousse’s late disqualification was made at the boxing venue the day after the bout took place and led to scenes of uproar in the hall. A distraught Brousse was carried on the shoulders of his supporters around the arena, demonstrators attempted to enter the ring and even after the gendarmes had restored some sort of order, the officials were the subject of abuse for the rest of the night.

Mallin came through his semi-final and in the final met his fellow Londoner, Jack Elliott. With the events of the welterweight final having left the arena already in turmoil, the sight of Mallin merely entering the ring set off a chorus of booing amongst the French supporters. Mallin did not fight to his usual standard but was good enough to outpoint Elliott and become the first boxer to successfully defend an Olympic title. The Olympic final was to be the final bout for the 32 year old champion; he retired having never lost a senior contest. He later served as manager of the British boxing team at both the Berlin and Helsinki games.

1Harry MallinGBRGold
2Jack ElliottGBRSilver
3Joseph BeeckenBELBronze
4Les BlackCAN
=5Daniel DaneyFRA
=5Roger BrousseFRA
=5Harry HenningCAN
=5Boy MurphyIRL
=9Erich SiebertSUI
=9Manuel GallardoARG
=9Eugeniusz NowakPOL
=9Adolphe LefkowitchUSA
=9Ben FunkUSA
=9Georges Van HaelenBEL
=9Georges GivelSUI
=9Øivind JensenNOR
=17Emilio BonfigliITA
=17Orlando LeopardiITA
=17Trygve StokstadNOR
=17Ray JonesAUS
=17Louis MeeuwessenNED
=17Pierre FeidtLUX
=17Jules SteichenLUX
DNSAndré FranotFRA
DNSJohn GrombachUSA
DNSMario CampiITA
DNSP. KouwenbergNED
DNSWilhelm HansenNOR
DNSFrank CrawleyGBR

Round One (15 July 1924)

Match #1 Roger BrousseFRA Bye
Match #2 Manuel GallardoARG Bye
Match #3 Erich SiebertSUI Bye
Match #4 Harry MallinGBR Trygve StokstadNOR Decision (– - –)
Match #5 Ben FunkUSA Ray JonesAUS Decision (– - –)
Match #6 Joseph BeeckenBEL Bye
Match #7 Georges Van HaelenBEL Bye
Match #8 Daniel DaneyFRA Emilio BonfigliITA Knock Out (Round 3)
Match #9 Les BlackCAN Pierre FeidtLUX Decision (– - –)
Match #10 Adolphe LefkowitchUSA Bye
Match #11 Boy MurphyIRL Bye
Match #12 Eugeniusz NowakPOL Bye
Match #13 Jack ElliottGBR Bye
Match #14 Georges GivelSUI Jules SteichenLUX Decision (– - –)
Match #15 Harry HenningCAN Orlando LeopardiITA Decision (– - –)
Match #16 Øivind JensenNOR Louis MeeuwessenNED Decision (– - –)

Round Two (17 July 1924)

Winner of each match advanced to the quarter-finals.

Match #1 Roger BrousseFRA Manuel GallardoARG Decision (– - –)
Match #2 Harry MallinGBR Erich SiebertSUI Retired (Round 2)
Match #3 Joseph BeeckenBEL Ben FunkUSA Decision (– - –)
Match #4 Daniel DaneyFRA Georges Van HaelenBEL Decision (– - –)
Match #5 Les BlackCAN Adolphe LefkowitchUSA Knock Out (Round 2)
Match #6 Boy MurphyIRL Eugeniusz NowakPOL Knock Out (Round 1)
Match #7 Jack ElliottGBR Georges GivelSUI Knock Out (Round 1)
Match #8 Harry HenningCAN Øivind JensenNOR Retired (Round 2)

Quarter-Finals (18 July 1924)

Winner of each match advanced to the semi-finals.

Match #1 Harry MallinGBR Roger BrousseFRA Disqualified (Round –)
Match #2 Joseph BeeckenBEL Daniel DaneyFRA Decision (– - –)
Match #3 Les BlackCAN Boy MurphyIRL Decision (– - –)
Match #4 Jack ElliottGBR Harry HenningCAN Decision (– - –)

Semi-Finals (19 July 1924)

Winner of each match advanced to the final match.

Match #1 Harry MallinGBR Joseph BeeckenBEL Decision (– - –)
Match #2 Jack ElliottGBR Les BlackCAN Decision (– - –)

Final Round (20 July 1924)

Match 1/2 Harry MallinGBR Jack ElliottGBR Decision (– - –)
Match 3/4 Joseph BeeckenBEL Les BlackCAN Walkover