Albert Barnes

Albert Barnes (1913-90) stands in history as one of Wales’ most distinguished amateur boxers.

The bantamweight, known as ‘Alf’, won silver at the 1934 Empire Games in Wembley where he lost in the final to Freddy Ryan on a controversial decision following a superb fight.

The Cardiff man went on to represent Great Britain at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, but controversy again surrounded his defeat, this time to the eventual bronze medalist, Mexican Fidel Ortiz.

Barnes won four Welsh ABA and three British ABA titles, and one of the most memorable nights of his career came when he floored and outpointed New York Golden Gloves champion and future world title holder Petey Scalzo in front of 48,000 at Yankee Stadium.

The Welshman resisted calls to turn professional, though, working at a flour mill, then serving in the RAF during World War II.

After the war he worked for Sherman’s football pools before establishing his own betting shop.

Barnes died of cancer in 1990 at the age of 77.


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