The gold medal matches for the women’s Olympic boxing tournament at London 2012 were held on Thursday, August 9th. All three weight divisions were down to their final pair. At Flyweight, Ren Cancan took on British Nicola Adams; at Lightweight, fan-favorite and dominant force Katie Taylor went for gold against Sofya Ochigava; and at Middleweight, women’s USA boxer Claressa Shields took on Nadeza Torlopova.
Which women came away with gold, and would Katie Taylor and Claressa Shields continue dominating as they had in their previous matches?
Ren Cancan vs. Nicola Adams
The packed crowd was thrilled to see their home country darling Nicola Adams get into the ring against the favored multi-time world champion, Ren Cancan of China. Using her jab and pressing the action, Adams was able to get in and out and grab a 4-2 first round lead.
Nicola wasn’t satisfied there, as she came out to dominate in the 2nd round. She floored Ren midway through the session — this was no Olympic standing 8 count, but a solid thrashing to the canvas. She won the round 5-2, boosting her lead to 9-4 through two.
Ren was more aggressive in the third, and Adams was happy to lay back and move around a bit more, looking to pick her spots and counter. She landed the cleaner shots and built her lead to 14-5, and went out to the fourth looking for a victory lap of sorts.
Adams stayed within herself in the fourth and kept Ren guessing, and at the final bell she flurried and began exulting in the win, punching the air. The final scores were 16-7 for Nicola Adams, the women’s Flyweight gold medal winner and Olympics champion.
And the first ever woman to be awarded a gold medal in boxing is the British Nicola Adams, fighting in front of her home country fans at the London Olympics, very appropriate.
Katie Taylor vs. Sofya Ochigava
The British fans were nuts for Nicola Adams, but the Irish fans were absolutely going berserk for Katie Taylor. The first round was fairly slow, as Taylor was content to let Ochigava come forward and attack, countering off that. Ochigava stopped obliging though, so Taylor came in and tagged her with a flush right before the bell. The round was scored even, 2-2.
The second round was still tentative, but the ladies started to get warmed up a little more. Taylor looked to bounce in and land clean combinations, Ochigava laid back and held on the inside. Taylor got sick of being held, and hit her with a nice shot with her free arm. However, Ochigava won the round 2-1, grabbing a 4-3 lead. Maybe all of her complaining to the judges before the fight about how Taylor was favorited was paying off.
Taylor definitely turned things up in the third round. She became more willing to simply be aggressive and lead, and that in turn forced Ochigava more on the defensive, and a little bit off balance compared to the first two rounds. The round swung things firmly in Katie’s favor, as she won the session 4-1 to grab a 7-5 lead heading into the final session.
Ochigava wasn’t just going to let Taylor walk away with it. She was much more active in the fourth, and the women had some very nice exchanges, each giving and taking. Taylor stumbled once after being hit, but regained her balance. Later, she did go down, but wasn’t given an 8 count.
But with 30 seconds left in the fight, the verdict was very much up in the air. Ochigava bulled in and Taylor looked to tag her, and at the bell the two women simply walked away with one another. Taylor and the Irish crowd thought she won, while Ochigava seemed pensive.
A long wait preceded the scorecards, but finally Katie Taylor was announced as the winner, 10-8. The crowd erupts and Taylor falls to her knees in celebration.
Claressa Shields vs. Nadezda Torlopova
Torlopova began the fight behind her jab, Shields trying to knock it down and counter. They continued in this fashion for much of the round, with Torlopova leading and Shields answering. It was 3-3 after a slowly paced opening session.
The moderate pace of the fight definitely favored the Russian, Torlopova, and continued into the second. Shields opened up a bit more midway through the round. Although at a height disadvantage, she was able to do more effective work when leading, and her punches clearly bothered Torlopova, and sent her backward. She won the round 7-4, grabbing a 10-7 lead.
Claressa continued being more assertive in the third, although not in the ferocious, nonstop assault mode she was in during her semifinals match on Wednesday. Still, she began landing hard shots more regularly, as Torlopova couldn’t cope with her speed or her aggression. Shields won the third 5-3, grabbing a 15-10 lead heading into the final session.
The fourth began slowly but soon it was Claressa again throwing the hard combinations, and showcasing some solid defensive skills as well. Torlopova never really opened up to go for the win, and Shields kept on doing her thing to close out the show.
The final score read 19-12 for Claressa Shields, the women’s Olympic boxing Middleweight champion, and the Team USA gold medal winner!
Thanks for checking out our women’s Olympic boxing results and the gold medal winners for the ladies at the London Games. Congratulations to all of the winners, and to the women from the USA boxing team who outdid the men. It was a fantastic inaugural run at the Summer Games for women’s boxing!