Italy’s Olympic Champion Ulderico Sergo won one of the titles at the Milan 1937 European Boxing Championships

19 May 2020 News

The fifth edition of the European Boxing Championships was held in Milan, Italy in 1937 three years after the previous Budapest competition. Poland, Italy and Germany each earned two gold medals in the 1937 European Boxing Championships in Milan where the host nation’s Olympic Champion Ulderico Sergo was the biggest hero.

The first competition day of the event was May 5 while the finals are scheduled on May 9 in 1937 in Milan. Following Swedish, German and Hungarian venues the European Boxing Championships arrived to Italy at the very first time in 1937. The competition was held in eight categories from the flyweight up to the heavyweight same as in the previous editions.

The number of the boxers was significantly increased following the 1934 edition and altogether 85 athletes competed in Milan. There were preliminaries in seven out of the eight weight classes which shows the strong development in the 1930’s.

The following 16 nations attended in the fifth edition of the European Boxing Championships in Milan: Austria, Belgium, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Switzerland, and Sweden.

Czechoslovakia, Germany, Italy, and Poland sent maximum number of eight boxers to the 1937 European Boxing Championships. England had to miss the 1937 European Boxing Championships but one of the future’s power in our sport Ireland has done its debut in the continental level of boxing.

Poland became the first nation in the history of the European Boxing Championships when not the host country topped the medal standings. Poland achieved two gold and two silver medals and ranked No.1 in the medal table before the Italians. The host nation team reached the most number of medals taking six on home soil while the Germans also achieved two gold medals in Milan.

The host of the previous two editions, Hungary and Sweden both earned one title in the 1937 European Boxing Championships. Estonia, Netherlands and Romania each won one silver medal in Milan, while Finland and Norway both took one bronze in 1937.

Two-time European Champion and Olympic Games winner Istvan Enekes’ younger brother Vilmos was 22 during the 1937 European Boxing Championships and followed the family traditions in Milan. The Hungarian flyweight boxer was too quick for Poland’s Berlin 1936 Olympic Games quarter-finalist Edmund Sobkowiak in the final.

Ulderico Sergo was one of the best boxers in the 1930’s and the Italian hope impressed once again in Milan in the front of the home crowd as well. He claimed the gold medal at the Berlin 1936 Olympic Games and the 24-year-old local favourite landed enough punches to beat Romania’s lone finalist in 1937, Anton Osca.

Aleksander Polus was born in Dortmund in Germany in 1914 but represented the Polish national team at the 1937 European Boxing Championships. The Olympian boxer won the title of the featherweight following his successes over the 1930 Champion Gyula Szabo and the local favourite, Italy’s Federico Cortonesi. His fellow Henryk Chmielewski was also from the 1914 age group and he was enough strong to beat Netherlands’ younger talent Gerardus Dekkers in a close final.

Herbert Nürnberg was a successful German boxer from the city of Kiel who has done his international debut just at the 1937 European Boxing Championships which he won over Estonia’s Berlin 1936 Olympic Games silver medallist Nikolai Stepulov while the favourite of the lightweight Italy’s defending champion Marino Facchin claimed only bronze. His teammate Michael Murach achieved Germany’s second gold medal in Milan who later was killed in action in the World War II in the USSR.

Hungary’s 1934 European Champion Lajos Szigeti moved up to the light heavyweight but in the semi-finals he lost to Italy’s Luigi Musina who defeated also Poland’s Franciszek Szymura in the final. Germany’s Berlin 1936 Olympian Games winner Herbert Runge advanced to the final of the heavyweight in 1934 and achieved silver once again in 1937. He lost to Sweden’s Olle Tandberg who became the youngest winner of the 1937 European Boxing Championships at the age of 18 years and 7 months.

List of the winners in the 1937 European Boxing Championships

Flyweight (50.8kg): Vilmos Enekes, Hungary

Bantamweight (53.5kg): Ulderico Sergo, Italy

Featherweight (57.2kg): Aleksander Polus, Poland

Lightweight (61.2kg): Herbert Nürnberg, Germany

Welterweight (66.7kg): Michael Murach, Germany

Middleweight (72.6kg): Henryk Chmielewski, Poland

Light heavyweight (79.4kg): Luigi Musina, Italy

Heavyweight (+79.4kg): Olle Tandberg, Sweden

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