Arguably, the USA's best chance to strike Gold in Athens is middleweight Andre Dirrell and he did not disappoint on the opening day of the boxing competition. The second bout of the 2004 Games saw Dirrell out-point Dabateer Ha 25-18 in a keenly contested bout. One of the other favourites besides Derrell to land Gold is Russian Gaydarbek Gaydarbekov, who won the silver medal four years ago in Sydney. He too came through his first bout comfortably with a clear points win over Christopher Camat in the day's fifth contest.
Ireland's only representative, London born Andy Lee cruised through to the next round with a impressive points win over tough Mexican Alfredo Lopez. The 20 year-old will find the going much tougher later on as there are at least four top quality men capable of winning the Gold.
Other middleweight (75kgs) results
Nabil Kassel Alg w pts 41-36 Glaucelio Abreu Bra 41:36
Yordanis Despaigne Herrera CUB w pts 36:24 Jean Pascal CAN
Karoly Balzsay HUN w pts 29:24 Mohamed Sahraoui TUN
Sherzod Abdurahmonov UZB w pts 34:16 Serdar Ustuner TUR
Hassan Ndam Njikam CMR w pts +22-22 Jose Juan Ubaldo DOM
Javid Tagiyev AZE w pts 32-31 Georgios Gazis GRE
Suriya Prasathinphimai THA w pts 30-21 Joseph Lubega UGA.
Lukas Wilaschek GER w pts 24-23 Jamie Pittman AUS
Oleg Mashkin UKR w pts 25-22 Godfrey Motau RSA
In the light-heavyweight division Beibut Shumenov from Kazakhstan used all his physical advantages to good effect to out-point Alexey Kuziemski from Poland by 34: points to 22. Shumenov, totted up the points by peppering the Pole with stiff jabs followed by single right hands. Kuziemski tried to unsettle Shumenov by continually switching stances but only succeeded in confusing himself and falling further behind.
Other results in the Light-Heavyweight 81kg class
Kinzi Abdelhani ALG w pts 25:19 Hak-Sung Song KOR
Haydarov Utkirbek UZB w pts 21:11 Ekpo Isaac NGR
Yildirim Tarhan TUR w rsf 3 Soulan Pownceby NZL
Trevor Stewardson CAN w pts 36:20Flavio Furtado CPV
AhmedIsmail El-Shamy EGY w pts 44:22 Shohrat Kurbanov TKM
Ramon Munoz Mata VEN w pts 31-23 Mario Sivolija CRO
Mag Aripgadjiev BLR w pts 29-10 Ramiro Reducindo MEX
Andriy Fedchuk UKR w rsf 1 Jitender Kumar IND
Yuping Lei CHN w pts 24-16 Celestin Yana CMR
Ali Ismayov AZE w pts 27-22 Washington Silva BRA
August 14, 2004.