History | Jun 16 2016

Canada and the Olympic Games

Chris Kempson on Canada's history in the Olympic Games
Lennox Lewis
Lennox-Lewis  |  Action Images/Richard Heathcote

CANADA, a country of around 36 million people, has won 17 medals in the Olympic boxing ring, three gold, seven silver and seven bronze. Not a bad return for a country which does not list boxing among its favourite pastimes, which include ice hockey, lacrosse and a host of other sports. It has appeared on another site that the country had acquired ten bronze medals, but I have only been able to identify seven which concurs with the official Canadian Olympic boxing site itself; so I will leave it there.

Gold medals have been won by the east London born Lennox Lewis at super-heavyweight in 1988, in 1932 at bantamweight with Horace Gwynne and in 1920, at welterweight by Bert Schneider. Of course, Lewis is by far the most famous, going on as a professional to become at present the last undisputed world heavyweight champion, he retired as such in 2004. Lennox has dual British and Canadian citizenship.

Lewis boxed at super-heavyweight in the 1984 Games, when the American, Tyrell Biggs outpointed the Canadian and went on to claim gold against Francesco Damiani of Italy. Biggs and Lewis were later to meet as professionals in1991 with Lennox a stoppage winner He won a gold at super-heavyweight in the Commonwealth Games in 1986, which helped him prepare for Olympic super –heavyweight glory in 1988.