Andrei Zamkovoi was beaten comprehensively by Cuba's Roniel Iglesias who eased through into the gold-medal final in two days time, winning five points to nil. The ROC boxer left the ring, possibly for the last time, with a bronze medal.
Zamkovoi, 34, in his third Games, matches the Olympic bronze he won at London 2012 but will likely retire now after his wife and coach persuaded him to continue after Rio 2016, five years ago, when he lost the first fight.
Iglesias, 32, at his fourth Olympic Games, has a chance to emulate the gold he claimed at London 2012, or at least beat the bronze he won at Beijing 2008, both in light welterweight.
Aiden Walsh withdraws but wins bronze
In the other semi-final, Ireland’s Aiden Walsh was forced to withdraw against Great Britain’s Pat McCormack due to injury and took bronze.
The Belfast fighter left the boxing stadium in a wheelchair following his quarter-final victory over Merven Clair of Mauritius and his camp were confident he would face McCormack.
However, the injury did not improve and, following scans and medical reviews, the decision was made to withdraw him from the fight.
The Olympic Federation of Ireland said “[McCormack] will still take home his bronze medal, which he won in the quarter-final bout, becoming the sixteenth boxer to bring home a medal from the Olympic Games.”
Pat McCormack was given a walkover into the final and will face Iglesias at the Kokugikan Arena on 3 August at 19.05 JST.