Grigoryev and Tamulis won their third titles in the Berlin 1965 European Boxing Championships17 June 2020
The 1965 edition of the European Boxing Championships was held in Berlin in East Germany where the Soviet Union achieved 80% of the gold medals. The Soviet Union’s Russian boxer Oleg Grigoryev and their Lithuanian star Ricardas Tamulis both won their third European titles in Berlin.
The first competition day of the European Boxing Championships was May 22 while the finals were held on May 29. Two rounds of preliminaries were held at the flyweight (51kg), at the featherweight (57kg), at the lightweight (60kg), at the light welterweight (63.5kg), at the welterweight (67kg) and at the light middleweight (71kg) due to the high number of participants in Berlin.
The number of the boxers was 172 in the Berlin 1965 European Boxing Championships which was near to its record. The following 24 nations attended in the 1965 edition: Austria, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, East Germany, England, Finland, France, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Scotland, Soviet Union, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, West Germany and Yugoslavia.
Eight nations such as Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Hungary, Poland, Soviet Union, West Germany and Yugoslavia attended with maximum number of ten boxers in the 1965 European Boxing Championships. Austria competed with impressive number of nine boxers in Berlin and among them two earned bronze medals in 1965.
Denmark, Luxembourg, Norway, Spain and Turkey returned to the level of the European Boxing Championships after a few years of break. France rolled an active part in the previous editions of the European Boxing Championships but their boxers failed to get any medals in the Berlin 1965 competition.
The Soviet Union dominated the event with their eight gold medals and only Poland and West Germany could get one title besides to them. Bulgaria, Italy, Denmark, England, East Germany, Romania, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Scotland, Hungary, Ireland and Switzerland claimed at least one medal in Berlin.
West Germany won the flyweight (51kg) title in the previous editions of the European Boxing Championships in 1955, in 1957 and in 1959 and after six years of break their next gold medallist in the smallest category was Hans Freistadt who defeated Poland’s 22-year-old Hubert Skrzypczak in the final.
Rome 1960 Olympic Champion Oleg Grigoryev won two European titles before the 1965 edition. He claimed gold first in 1957 and repeated that performance six years later in Moscow on home soil. Grigoryev was 28 by the time of the 1965 European Boxing Championships but he defeated all of his four rivals including Poland’s Jan Galazka in the final of the bantamweight (54kg).
Soviet Union’s Stanislav Stepashkin won the gold at the Tokyo 1964 Olympic Games and at the 1963 European Boxing Championships before defending his throne at the featherweight (57kg) in Berlin. His Olympic Games silver medallist teammate Velikton Barannikov achieved the Soviet Union’s third gold medal in 1965. Barannikov had to meet with Poland’s Jozef Grudzien which was the repeat final of the Tokyo 1964 Olympic Games but this time the Soviet boxer won their impressive bout.
Poland’s Jerzy Kulej won the Moscow 1963 European Boxing Championships and also the Tokyo 1964 Olympic Games as Stanislav Stepashkin therefore he was one of the stars of the Berlin edition. The 25-year-old Polish boxer did not stop his trainings following his Olympic title and prepared well to get his second European title. Kulej defeated all of his five opponents including Soviet Union’s Yevgeniy Frolov and Denmark’s Preben Rasmussen.
The Soviet Union’s Lithuanian welterweight (67kg) boxer Ricardas Tamulis was 27 by the time of the Berlin 1965 European Boxing Championships where he was able to get his third-in-a-row title after beating Italy’s Luigi Patruno in the final. Soviet Union’s Olympic Champion Boris Lagutin was replaced by Viktor Ageyev but his younger fellow also won the European title at the light middleweight (71kg).
Soviet Union’s lone boxer who won the Val Barker Trophy as the Most Outstanding Boxer of the Olympic Games was Valeriy Popenchenko in 1964. The defending champion of the middleweight (75kg) was technically better than his opponents and he used his strength also to defeat them in Berlin. Popenchenko knocked out England’s William Robinson in the final and retired from the sport short after his success as one of the most decorative athletes.
Soviet Union’s Lithuanian Danas Pozniakas claimed silver medal at the light heavyweight (81kg) in 1963 which he changed into gold in Berlin following his success over West Germany’s Peter Gerber in the final. The Soviet Union won the heavyweight (+81kg) in 1953, in 1955, in 1957, in 1959 and in 1961 and after a short break their Aleksandr Izosimov regained their title in Berlin.
List of the winners in the 1965 European Boxing Championships
- Flyweight (51kg): Hans Freistadt, West Germany
- Bantamweight (54kg): Oleg Grigoryev, Soviet Union
- Featherweight (57kg): Stanislav Stepashkin, Soviet Union
- Lightweight (60kg): Velikton Barannikov, Soviet Union
- Light welterweight (63.5kg): Jerzy Kulej, Poland
- Welterweight (67kg): Ricardas Tamulis, Soviet Union
- Light middleweight (71kg): Viktor Ageyev, Soviet Union
- Middleweight (75kg): Valeriy Popenchenko, Soviet Union
- Light heavyweight (81kg): Danas Pozniakas, Soviet Union
- Heavyweight (+81kg): Aleksandr Izosimov, Soviet Union
In featured image: Ricardas Tamulis