Sport and pasttime in wales

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Some of the industrial communities of south Wales have a long tradition of boxing that stretches back to their very beginning.  Even before then, bare-knuckle boxing was a spectacle in pre-industrial Wales, often accompanied by drinking, betting and general unruliness.

Some degree of regulation was introduced in 1867 when the Welshman J. G. Chambers drew out the Queensberry rules, but the sport was discouraged by the authorities until well into the twentieth century.

Over the course of the twentieth century, south Wales has produced an impressive line-up of champion boxers, including Freddie Welsh, the Moody Brothers, Howard Winstone, Jim Driscoll, Jimmy Wilde, Dai Dower, Dai Davies, Jack Petersen, Tommy Farr and Johnny Basham. These men were not only talented individuals but their successes also became unifying forces as their native communities rallied behind them.

The long tradition of boxing in south Wales has been carried into the twenty-first century by the likes of Enzo Maccarinelli of Swansea and Joe Calzaghe of Newbridge.

Items on the Gathering the Jewels website:







K.O. Morgan, Rebirth of a Nation: Wales 1880-1980 (Oxford, 1982)
The Welsh Academy Encylopaedia of Wales (Cardiff, 2008)