Blasts from the past: Double Olympic glory in Antwerp


Blasts from the past: Double Olympic glory in Antwerp

David Isaacson

Today in SA sports history: August 10
1920 – Track cyclists William Smith and James Walker become double Olympic medallists on the same day at the Antwerp Games, taking silver in the tandem and then bronze in the team pursuit alongside teammates Sammy Goosen and Henry Kaltenbrunn.
1928 – South Africa is denied the chance of winning the Olympic bantamweight boxing gold medal for a third consecutive Games when Harry Isaacs is pushed out of the final in a bizarre turn of events. Isaacs takes on American John Daley in the semifinal at the Amsterdam Games, where several decisions had drawn ire during the competition. The South African is named as the winner of the bout – deservedly so, apparently – but then American fans boo the outcome and storm the ringside area, demanding the decision be reversed. Police tried to control the mob, and eventually it was announced that the wrong decision had been read out, and that Daley had actually won. Isaacs went on to take the bronze medal by outpointing Ireland’s Frank Traynor to at least keep South Africa on the Olympic bantamweight podium for a third consecutive time. Daley lost in the final to Italy’s Vittorio Tamagnini.

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