Olympics Summer

Men's 64kg

Who to look for in the men's 64kg weight class

Name  Serik Sapiyev 
Country  Kazakhstan 
Credentials  Two-time and reigning world champion.                                                     

Name  Manus Boonjumnong
Country  Thailand 
Credentials  Defending Olympic champion. 2006 Asian Games champion.                   

Name Gennady Kovalev 
Country  Russia 
Credentials  Two-time world silver medallist.                                                                  

Name Ionut Gheorghe 
Country  Romania 
Credentials  2004 Olympic bronze medallist.                                                                 

On a roll

Serik Sapiyev. The only thing eluding Sapiyev is Olympic gold, a medal he should be receiving at the conclusion of this event in Beijing.

"He's just too good for all the other fighters," said Adrian Teodorescu, owner of Atlas Gym in Toronto, and also the former coach of ex-heavyweight and Olympic champion Lennox Lewis.

On a slide

Alexis Vastine, France. Vastine qualifed for the Olympics at last year's world championship, but was dominated by Englishman Bradley Saunders 30-13 in the quarter-finals.

The X factor

Manus Boonjumnong. While his younger brother Non is expected to have a better showing in the 69 kg division, Boonjumnong's Olympic gold medal four years ago makes him a threat to reach the podium again in Beijing.

Under the radar

Ionut Gheorghe. The Olympic bronze medallist is a very tough fighter who was upset by Iranian Morteza Sepahavand during last year's world championship, yet remains a top contender.

"He's been battling hand injuries, but I think he'll do well in Beijing," said Teodorescu.


How dominant was Sapiyev at the 2007 world championship? The Kazakhstan boxer fought six times and only was only taken the distance twice. In those two bouts, Sapiyev defeated Kovalev and Serbia's Milan Piperski by an astounding margin of 42-11.

"He's the complete fighter," said Teodorescu. "He has power, strength, stamina and can adapt to any style."

Medal Predictions

Gold: Serik Sapiyev

Silver: Ionut Gheorghe

Bronze: Gennady Kovalev

Bronze: Alexis Vastine