Estonia’s first Olympic medal

Estonia’s first Olympic medal was won by Martin Klein at the Stockholm Olympics in 1912 when he won a silver medal in Greco-Roman wrestling in a match that lasted almost 12 hours. Martin Klein, from Viljandi County in South Estonia, reached the top three in the Olympic tournament in the weight of up to 75 kg. On July 14, 1912, at 10:30 am, the Estonian hero started his eighth match against the reigning world champion from Finland, Alfred Asikainen, who had
been freed twice due to a draw and only had to fight five times. It wasn’t until 10:10 p.m. that Klein was declared the winner of the longest match in wrestling history, lasting 11 hours and 40 minutes.

The doctors forbade the battered man to continue wrestling in the tournament, so the Swede Claes Johansson won the gold medal without wrestling in the final round, even though he had won against only five opponents in the tournament and lost to the later bronze winner, Asikainen, by the judges’ decision.

Location:The Estonian Sports and Olympic Museum

  • 3. Eesti esimene olümpiakuld-A.Neuland_foto-Maris Mägi

Estonian Sports and Olympic Museum

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