Ahmet Kireççi

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Ahmet Kireççi
Medal record
Olympic Games
Men's Greco-Roman Wrestling
Gold medal – first place 1948 London Heavyweight
Men's Freestyle Wrestling
Bronze medal – third place 1936 Berlin Middleweight

Ahmet Kireççi (aka Ahmet Mersinli, 27 October 1914 in Mersin – 17 August 1978 in Mersin, Turkey), was a Turkish sports wrestler, who won the Olympic medal twice, the bronze medal in the Middleweight class of Men's Freestyle Wrestling at the 1936 Olympics and the gold medal in the Heavyweight class of Men's Greco-Roman category at the 1948 Olympics.

Born in the southern city of Mersin, he began first boxing and then continued in athletics. He switched over to wrestling and took part in a yağlı güreş (oil wrestling) competition in Tarsus, where he became champion.

Ahmet Kireççi was sent to Istanbul to join the Wrestling Club of Kumkapı. In 1931, he was admitted to the national team, of which he was a member 17 years long. With 18 years of age, he became Balkan champion, a title he repeated twice more. With his bronze medal gathered at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, he became the first Turkish wrestler to win an Olympic medal in the Freestyle and to win an Olympic medal in the both wrestling styles.

Following President İsmet İnönü's suggestion at a reception after his return, Ahmet Kireççi accepted to change his family name officially to Mersinli, which was his nickname.

He died on 17 August 1978 following a traffic accident in his hometown.[1] A statue of him erected in a corner near the harbour of Mersin commemorates the successful and popular wrestler.[2]

Achievements[edit]

  • 1932 Balkan Championships - gold
  • 1936 Olympics in Berlin, Germany - bronz (Freestyle Middleweight)
  • 1937 World Championships - bronze
  • 1940 Balkan Championships - gold
  • 1948 Olympics in London, England - gold (Greco-Roman Heavyweight)

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Forum (Turkish)
  2. ^ Turkish Class

References[edit]