Boxing at the 1976 Summer Olympics – Middleweight

The men's middleweight event was part of the boxing programme at the 1976 Summer Olympics. The weight class allowed boxers of up to 75 kilograms to compete. The competition was held from 19 to 31 July 1976. 19 boxers from 19 nations competed.[1]

Middleweight boxing
at the Games of the XXI Olympiad
VenueMaurice Richard Arena, Montreal
Dates19–31 July
Competitors19 from 19 nations
1st place, gold medalist(s) Michael Spinks  United States
2nd place, silver medalist(s) Rufat Riskiyev  Soviet Union
3rd place, bronze medalist(s) Luis Martínez  Cuba
3rd place, bronze medalist(s) Alec Năstac  Romania
← 1972
1980 →


Gold Michael Spinks
  United States
Silver Rufat Riskiyev
  Soviet Union
Bronze Luis Martínez
Bronze Alec Năstac


The following boxers took part in the event:[1]

Rank Name Country
1 Michael Spinks   United States
2 Rufat Riskiyev   Soviet Union
3T Luis Martínez   Cuba
3T Alec Năstac   Romania
5T Ryszard Pasiewicz   Poland
5T Dragan Vujković   Yugoslavia
5T Fernando Martins   Brazil
5T Siraj Din   Pakistan
9T Jean-Pierre Malavasi   France
9T Dave Odwell   Great Britain
9T Phil McElwaine   Australia
9T Bernd Wittenburg   East Germany
9T Ilian Dimitrov   Bulgaria
14T Carlos Betancourt   Puerto Rico
14T Bryan Gibson   Canada
14T Nicolás Arredondo   Mexico
14T Mohamed Saoud   Morocco
14T Fulgencio Obelmejias   Venezuela
14T Jorma Taipale   Finland

First roundEdit

Second roundEdit




In the gold medal bout, American rookie Spinks faced the veteran Soviet Rufat Riskiyev, the 1974 World Champion. Riskiyev had defeated Spinks at a match in Tashkent early in 1976, but in the final, Spinks landed a telling body blow in round three, and the referee had to stop the contest, giving Spinks, just 19 years of age, the gold medal.

Spinks, whose brother, Leon, won the light-heavyweight gold medal in Montreal, turned professional. In 1981 he won the WBA light-heavyweight world title by defeating Eddie Mustafa Muhammad. Michael Spinks would hold a version of the light-heavyweight title through 1985 when he moved up to the heavies and defeated Larry Holmes to win the IBF heavyweight crown, the first light-heavyweight champion to move on to become heavyweight world champ. Spinks fought through 1988, winning his first 31 fights, but he retired after losing a heavyweight title fight that year to Mike Tyson.

Riskiyev, who was 27 at the time of the 1976 Olympics, stayed in the amateurs, as the Soviet system did not allow any athletes to turn pro, though he didn’t achieve further success.[2]


  1. ^ a b "Boxing at the 1976 Montreal Summer Games: Men's Middleweight". Sports Reference. Retrieved 23 December 2018.
  2. ^