|Date||24 July – 4 August 1996|
|Location||Alexander Memorial Coliseum, Atlanta, Georgia|
|Participants||31 from 31 countries|
|Format||Single elimination tournament.|
Antonio Tarver, already favourite for the Olympic title after being crowned world champion in 1995, was given a further boost shortly before the Games began when his predecessor as world champion, Ramon Garbey of Cuba, defected to the United States.
Tarver began his Olympic campaign in fine style with three clear victories but the semi-final brought a massive disappointment for the home crowd when Vasily Zhirov proved too strong for the American and ran out a clear victor by a 15-9 margin.
By then Zhirov had already accounted for his main European rival Pietro Aurino and had only to see off the challenge of Korean Lee Seung-Bae to win gold for Kazakhstan. Lee had moved up from the middleweight division since winning a bronze medal in Barcelona and was much the smaller man of the two finalists. He was unable to cope with the size and speed of Zhirov and was susceptible to the body punches of the Kazakh fighter. In the final round Zhirov stepped up the place and forced a standing eight count on the Korean. His performances earned the Kazakh fighter the Val Barker Award as the outstanding boxer of the tournament.
Zhirov and Tarver both had long and successful careers as professionals and both had long spells as world champion. Tarver notably had a memorable series of fights against [Roy Jones, Jr.] (/athletes/8704) and won two of their three fights.
|7||Daniel Andrade Júnior||BRA|
|=17||Julio César González||MEX|
|=17||Ayoub Pourtaghi Ghoushchi||IRI|
Winner of each match advanced to the second round.
|Match #1||David Kowah||SLE||Bye|
|Match #2||Antonio Tarver||USA||Dmitry Vybornov||RUS||Decision (5 - 2)|
|Match #3||Sybrand Botes||RSA||Gabriel Hernández||DOM||Decision (16 - 11)|
|Match #4||Enrique Flores||PUR||Gurcharan Singh||IND||Decision (15 - 7)|
|Match #5||Troy Amos-Ross||CAN||Roland Raforme||SEY||Knock Out (Round 3, 2:16)|
|Match #6||Paul Mbongo||CMR||Peter Odhiambo||KEN||Decision (15 - 6)|
|Match #7||Vasily Zhirov||KAZ||Julio César González||MEX||Referee Stops Contest (Round 2, 2:10)|
|Match #8||Pietro Aurino||ITA||Yusuf Öztürk||TUR||Decision (15 - 7)|
|Match #9||Daniel Andrade Júnior||BRA||Khadour Adnan||SYR||Decision (9 - 4)|
|Match #10||Jean-Louis Mandengue||FRA||Ayoub Pourtaghi Ghoushchi||IRI||Decision (21 - 9)|
|Match #11||Ismael Koné||SWE||İlham Kərimov||AZE||Decision (22 - 3)|
|Match #12||Thomas Ulrich||GER||Rick Timperi||AUS||Decision (21 - 7)|
|Match #13||Stipe Drviš||CRO||John Douglas||GUY||Referee Stops Contest (Round 2, 2:52)|
|Match #14||Temur Ibragimov||UZB||Rostyslav Zaulychnyi||UKR||Decision (7 - 3)|
|Match #15||Lee Seung-Bae||KOR||Sam Leuii||SAM||Decision (14 - 0)|
|Match #16||Freddy Rojas||CUB||Mohamed Mahmoud||EGY||Decision (20 - 9)|
Winner of each match advanced to the quarter-finals.
|Match #1||Antonio Tarver||USA||David Kowah||SLE||Referee Stops Contest (Round 1, 2:43)|
|Match #2||Enrique Flores||PUR||Sybrand Botes||RSA||Decision (16 - 7)|
|Match #3||Troy Amos-Ross||CAN||Paul Mbongo||CMR||Decision (7 - 3)|
|Match #4||Vasily Zhirov||KAZ||Pietro Aurino||ITA||Decision (18 - 13)|
|Match #5||Daniel Andrade Júnior||BRA||Jean-Louis Mandengue||FRA||Referee Stops Contest (Head Blow) (Round 1, 1:50)|
|Match #6||Thomas Ulrich||GER||Ismael Koné||SWE||Decision (24 - 9)|
|Match #7||Stipe Drviš||CRO||Temur Ibragimov||UZB||Decision (10 - 9)|
|Match #8||Lee Seung-Bae||KOR||Freddy Rojas||CUB||Decision (13 - 9)|
Winner of each match advanced to the semi-finals.
|Match #1||Antonio Tarver||USA||Enrique Flores||PUR||Referee Stops Contest (Head Blow) (Round 3, 1:54)|
|Match #2||Vasily Zhirov||KAZ||Troy Amos-Ross||CAN||Decision (14 - 8)|
|Match #3||Thomas Ulrich||GER||Daniel Andrade Júnior||BRA||Decision (14 - 7)|
|Match #4||Lee Seung-Bae||KOR||Stipe Drviš||CRO||Decision (14 - 11)|
Winner of each match advanced to the final match.
|Match #1||Vasily Zhirov||KAZ||Antonio Tarver||USA||Decision (15 - 9)|
|Match #2||Lee Seung-Bae||KOR||Thomas Ulrich||GER||Decision (12 - 8)|
|Match 1/2||Vasily Zhirov||KAZ||Lee Seung-Bae||KOR||Decision (17 - 4)|