Advertisement
Advertisement

A Look at The 2012 Olympics: Division By Division Review

By Mark Staniforth

After a weekend of high-profile fights at home and abroad, attention will now turn to the ring at the Olympic Games.

With the beginning of the London boxing competition fast approaching, we provide a guide to the likely contenders in each of the 13 weight categories at the Games:

LIGHT-FLYWEIGHT

World and Olympic champion Zou Shiming is clearly the man to beat. Ireland's Paddy Barnes, beaten by a rather exaggerated 15-0 by the Chinese star in the Beijing semi-finals, is determined to be the man to do it. Filipino teenager Mark Barriga, who beat Barnes in last year's World Championship, is a good outside bet.

FLYWEIGHT

European champion and world silver medallist Andrew Selby is arguably the best gold chance of the British men. But he will be up against it against Russia's Misha Aloian, who denied him in Baku last year. Rising Irish star Michael Conlan is a definite contender, as is experienced American Rau'shee Warren.

BANTAMWEIGHT

World champion Lazaro Alvarez is one of the strongest members of the Cuban team. Luke Campbell, beaten by Alvarez in last year's world final, and Ireland's John Joe Nevin are also major medal hopes. Veteran Bulgarian Detelin Dalakliev and Kazakh Kanat Abutalipov should also figure.

LIGHTWEIGHT

Ukraine's world and Olympic champion Vasyl Lomachenko is one of the best in the business - as is Italy's world number one Domenico Valentino, who will provide his main challenge. Only Cuba's Yasniel Toledo and Turkey's Fatih Keles look capable of preventing a final between the two favourites.

LIGHT-WELTERWEIGHT

Thomas Stalker is among the favourites at a tough weight including world champion Everton Lopes of Brazil, Asian champion Munkh-Erdene Uranchimeg of Mongolia, Cuba's former world champion Roniel Iglesias, and strong, attacking Ukrainian Denis Berinchyk, who could prove the man to beat.

WELTERWEIGHT

According to Amir Khan's trainer Freddie Roach, Errol Spence has the best shot for the US in one of the weaker divisions. Ukraine's Taras Shelestyuk, tricky Kazakh Serik Sapiyev and Lithuania's Egidijus Kavaliauskas are among the favourites, along with British hope, European champion Fred Evans.

MIDDLEWEIGHT

World champion Evyen Khytrov of the Ukraine, and Uzbek former world champion Abbos Atoev are the division's big hitters. Japan's Ryota Murata is also a contender and Algeria's Abdelmalek Rahou is capable of springing a surprise. Anthony Ogogo and Ireland's Darren O'Neill are capable of sneaking in.

LIGHT-HEAVYWEIGHT

At a weight heavy on veterans, Cuba's Julio Cesar De La Cruz starts as favourite, followed by tough Kazakh Adilbek Niyazymbetov and Algeria's Abdelhafid Benchabla. Russia's Egor Mekhontsev and Uzbek Elshod Rasulov have both been there before and will push for medals.

HEAVYWEIGHT

Azeri southpaw Teymur Mammadov leads the challenge to established names such as Ukrainian world champion Oleksandr Usyk and Italy's Clemente Russo. But two outsiders ready to stake a claim are Bulgaria's Tervel Pulev - brother of pro contender Kubrat - and 17-year-old Australian Jai Opetaia, the 2011 world junior champion.

SUPER-HEAVYWEIGHT

In arguably the best division of all, Anthony Joshua's hopes of home city glory will be challenged by Azeri Magomedrasul Medzhidov, China's 2008 silver medallist Zhilei Zhang, veteran Italian Roberto Cammarelle and Cuba's Erislandy Savon - nephew of Olympic legend Felix. Each one has gold medal pedigree.

WOMEN'S FLYWEIGHT

All signs point to a repeat gold bout between Nicola Adams and China's Cancan Ren - who has beaten Adams in the last two World Championship finals. Adams has what it takes to finally get the better of her on home soil. Russia's Elena Savelyeva and Indian superstar Mary Kom are no pushovers, however.

WOMEN'S LIGHTWEIGHT

Ireland's four-time world champion Katie Taylor is probably the best gold medal bet in the sport. But the division is not without its challenges with strong Russian Sofya Ochigava and Tajikistan Mavzuna Chorieva leading the charge. Liverpool's Natasha Jonas is a good medal hope.

WOMEN'S MIDDLEWEIGHT

If she wants to add Olympic gold to her world title, Savannah Marshall is likely to have to see off 17-year-old American Claressa Shields, highly hyped back home and itching for revenge after her World Championship loss to the Hartlepool fighter. Former world number one Mary Spencer is also a big threat.

Mark Staniforth covers boxing for PA Sport

Tags: Amateur Boxing image  
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Dave Rado on 07-22-2012

[QUOTE=BIGPOPPAPUMP;12361789]After a weekend of high-profile fights at home and abroad, attention will now turn to the ring at the Olympic Games. With the beginning of the London boxing competition fast approaching, we provide a guide to the likely contenders in…

Comment by Kunni Phunt on 07-22-2012

I started a thread a week or so ago to see if anyone is taking bets...upto now only one taker but if any of you fancy a bet look up my thread... I'm flying back to the UK tomorrow and…

Comment by TaurusJ27 on 07-22-2012

[QUOTE=Mastrangelo;12362119]It will be pretty cool to watch it, I wasn't that huge boxing fan during last olympics yet, but it was still interesting. Now I'll have to pick some guys to support at every weight class.[/QUOTE] I'm more interested in…

Comment by Hitman Hodgson on 07-22-2012

Nicola Adams grew up not far from me, she's always been a boxing beast.:boxing:

Comment by Cloud on 07-22-2012

I wasn't a boxing fan either when the last Olympics came round. Funny how the years fly by and stuff changes.

Post a Comment/View More User Comments (15)
Top Headlines Daily Bread Mailbag: Mayweather-Garcia, Golovkin-Canelo, More James DeGale is Eager To End The Callum Smith Hype Train Canelo's Coach Rejects Claim That Khan's Chin is Poor: It's a Myth! Victor Ortiz-Andre Berto II: Pre-Fight Report Card Lipinets: Me and Ortiz Went To War in Camp, He'll Beat Berto Donald Trump and Ted Cruz Now Battle Over - Mike Tyson Canelo's Coach: Golovkin Has Beaten Nobody, Lower Level Foes! Casimero Vows To Get Revenge on Amnat Ruenroeng on May 25 Dirrell Brothers, Jonathan Guzman Win Big In Atlantic City Orlando Salido Reacts To Francisco Vargas' Positive Drug Test Pano Tiatia, Other Dunkin Fighters Set For Action on Victory Card Beibut Shumenov Files Protest Against Dorticos-Kalenga WBA Clash Marquez Pleads With Canelo, De La Hoya To Make Golovkin Fight Povetkin: Wilder's 'Klitschko Tactics' Won't Work, Maybe He's Nervous Photos: Victor Ortiz, Andre Berto Try To Intimidate Each Other Photos/Weights: Pedro Campa vs. Jose Alfaro, More Hearn Explains Rift With DeGale, Situation With Haymon - Video Video: Victor Ortiz, Andre Berto Tense Face To Face at Weighin Lolenga Mock Outscores David Becarra Over Ten Rounds Callum Smith Hits Washington To Scout Badou Jack-Lucian Bute Fury Just Wants To Be Left Alone To Enjoy a Chicken Sandwich Francisco Vargas Granted Temporary License, Must Submit To Additional Testing Vasyl Lomachenko: Nicholas Walters Kept Making Excuses Rances Barthelemy-Mickey Bey Tops PBC on Spike, June 3 Photos: Badou Jack, James DeGale, Bute, Medina Ready To Fight Photos: Manny Pacquiao Hits The Campaign Trail in Senate Bid News: Marquis Moore; Orlando Del Valle; Dashon Johnson Video: Jack-Bute, DeGale-Medina Make Weight For Battle All Fighters Make Weight For Showtime Double In D.C. Khan: Beating Canelo Would Be Monumental For British Boxing DeGale: I Told Badou Jack 'You're Next, Green Belt is Coming To UK' Bellew vs. Makabu Title Clash Officially Unveiled Weights From London: Fury 231, Kassi 233 Carl Frampton Relinquishes IBF 122-Pound Crown Kovalev's Promoter Details How Chilemba/Russia Deal Came About Andre Dirrell 'Definitely' Would Go To England For DeGale Rematch Porter: Thurman Doesn't Work on The Inside, Smarter Fighter Wins Gaiyanghadaogym, Sithsamerchai Claim Wins In Thailand Frampton: Leo Santa Cruz's Style is Made For Me, 100% I'll Win Jeff Horn Targets WBO Title Showdown With Jessie Vargas
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement