Boxing: Joshua golden comeback delights crowd
By Patrick Johnston and Padraic Halpin
LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's Anthony Joshua produced a big comeback to beat Italian Olympic champion Roberto Cammarelle to super-heavyweight gold on Sunday, capping an impressive performance in the ring by the host nation.
Joshua, ten years Cammarelle's junior and heavily fancied for gold before the final, came from three points down going into the last round to win the final bout of the London Games on the nerve-shredding countback rule.
The Italians opposed the decision, delaying the medal ceremony, but their protest was denied to cheers from an arena packed with partisan support who chanted, "Joshua, Joshua, Joshua," as the big Briton finally collected his gold.
"He is an Olympic champion. Once again, there is no easy fight in these Olympics and I pulled it out of the bag," Joshua told reporters.
"It's not just me, it's for my fallen soldiers and the ones that made it and we all drag each other along to the top. So to Team GB, to the 10 of us - three girls and seven boys - congratulations."
Joshua's gold was a fitting end to Britain's best performance in the Olympic ring since 1908, as the men added two golds, a silver and a bronze to the gold won by Nicola Adams in the first women's finals on Thursday.
The hosts finished top of the boxing medals table.
The 22-year-old Britain, one of the tallest men in the competition at 198 centimeters (six feet six inches), bossed the early stages of the first round but Cammarelle landed five big hooks in a row in the closing seconds to take a narrow lead. Continued...