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| Event type

Heavyweight (>175 pounds), Men

Date10 – 15 August 1936
StatusOlympic
LocationDeutschlandhalle, Berlin
Participants17 from 17 countries
FormatSingle elimination tournament.

Traditionally the highlight of the boxing competition, this was expected to be a close fought competition with a number of highly regarded fighters in contention. One such fighter was the Belgian Albert Robbe, an American newspaper reported that he had the reputation of being “Three parts fighting tiger to one part Jack Dempsey”. After his abysmal performance in losing to Ferenc Nagy of Hungary they changed this description to have him “stinking like a Gorgonzola cheese”.

Another favoured contender, the American Art Oliver, who had served as a sparring partner to the great Joe Louis, lost to the teenage Swede Olle Tandberg in his first bout. The most unusual performance of the tournament came from one of the Austrian coaches who, after his fighter Karl Lutz had lost to a boxer from Luxembourg, ran around the ring literally tearing his hair out; he pulled large tufts of his hair out as an apparent protest at the verdict.

The German champion Herbert Runge moved into the semi-finals with an easy knockout over a Czechoslovakian and a hard fought points victory over the British entry. His opponent in the semis should have been Nagy but the Hungarian had been injured in his defeat of Tandberg and was forced to withdraw from the tournament. The other semi-final pairing brought together Erling Nielsen of Norway, who had knocked out both his previous opponents and Guillermo Lovell of Argentina, brother of the 1932 heavyweight gold medallist, Alberto Lovell. Lovell’s raw aggression was a little too much for his Norwegian opponent, who had to settle for bronze.

The final started explosively with Lovell and Runge exchanging powerful punches throughout a reasonably even first round. The decisive moment came near the end of the second round when Runge knocked Lovell to the floor, the bell saved the Argentine from a possible stoppage. Runge had the upper hand from then on but although he ended the fight with what appeared to be bite marks on his shoulder, it was Runge who received two warnings from the British referee.

Runge, an apprentice butcher by trade, was eight times national amateur champion between 1935 and 1943 and was three times a medallist at the European Championships, although the Olympic gold was his only major international title. Turning professional at the age of thirty-three he had an unsuccessful attempt at the German title. Erling Nielsen won a bronze medal at the 1937 Europeans but Olle Tandberg went on to win the gold at that tournament and retain it in 1939, he would have a favourite for the abortive 1940 Games. Tandberg had a professional career which culminated in a world heavyweight title eliminator against Jersey Joe Walcott. 43,000 spectators at the Råsunda Stadium, Stockholm watched Tandberg knocked down four times in a five-round defeat. Art Oliver was tragically killed in 1944 when a vehicle in which he was a passenger collided with a train.

PosBoxerNOC
1Herbert RungeGERGold
2Guillermo LovellARGSilver
3Erling NilsenNORBronze
4Ferenc NagyHUN
=5José FeansURU
=5Ernest ToussaintLUX
=5Olle TandbergSWE
=5Anthony StuartGBR
=9Stanisław PiłatPOL
=9Omar HermansenDEN
=9Karl LutzAUT
=9Walter MartiSUI
=9Art OliverUSA
=9Albert RobbeBEL
=9Rudolf KusTCH
=9Secondo De MarchiITA
17Albert van BemmelNED
DNSErich SchnarreGER
DNSFabián del ValleESP
DNSGeorge BirdCAN
DNSPat FloydGBR
DNSJames RasmussenCHI
DNSJens JørgensenDEN
DNSKarel NejtekTCH
DNSLi MenghuaCHN
DNSNino PaolettiITA
DNSWillis JohnsonUSA

Round One (10 August 1936 — 20:30)

Winner of each match advanced to the second round.

Match #1 José FeansURU Bye
Match #2 Stanisław PiłatPOL Bye
Match #3 Guillermo LovellARG Bye
Match #4 Omar HermansenDEN Bye
Match #5 Ernest ToussaintLUX Bye
Match #6 Karl LutzAUT Bye
Match #7 Erling NilsenNOR Bye
Match #8 Walter MartiSUI Bye
Match #9 Olle TandbergSWE Bye
Match #10 Art OliverUSA Bye
Match #11 Ferenc NagyHUN Bye
Match #12 Albert RobbeBEL Bye
Match #13 Herbert RungeGER Bye
Match #14 Rudolf KusTCH Bye
Match #15 Secondo De MarchiITA Bye
Match #16 Anthony StuartGBR Albert van BemmelNED Decision (– - –)

Round Two (11 – 12 August 1936 — 15:00 (11/8), 15:00-20:30 (12/8))

Winner of each match advanced to the quarter-finals.

Match #1 José FeansURU Stanisław PiłatPOL Decision (– - –)
Match #2 Guillermo LovellARG Omar HermansenDEN Decision (– - –)
Match #3 Ernest ToussaintLUX Karl LutzAUT Decision (– - –)
Match #4 Erling NilsenNOR Walter MartiSUI Knock Out (Round 3)
Match #5 Olle TandbergSWE Art OliverUSA Decision (– - –)
Match #6 Ferenc NagyHUN Albert RobbeBEL Decision (– - –)
Match #7 Herbert RungeGER Rudolf KusTCH Knock Out (Round 1)
Match #8 Anthony StuartGBR Secondo De MarchiITA Decision (– - –)

Quarter-Finals (13 August 1936 — 15:00-20:30)

Winner of each match advanced to the semi-finals.

Match #1 Guillermo LovellARG José FeansURU Knock Out (Round 2)
Match #2 Erling NilsenNOR Ernest ToussaintLUX Knock Out (Round 2)
Match #3 Ferenc NagyHUN Olle TandbergSWE Decision (– - –)
Match #4 Herbert RungeGER Anthony StuartGBR Decision (– - –)

Semi-Finals (14 August 1936 — 15:00-20:30)

Winner of each match advanced to the final match.

Match #1 Guillermo LovellARG Erling NilsenNOR Decision (– - –)
Match #2 Herbert RungeGER Ferenc NagyHUN Walkover

Final Round (15 August 1936 — 20:30)

Match 1/2 Herbert RungeGER Guillermo LovellARG Decision (– - –)
Match 3/4 Erling NilsenNOR Ferenc NagyHUN Walkover