Richard ‘Dick’ Garrard OBE (Wrestling) carried the Australian flag at the opening ceremony of the 1954 British Empire and Commonwealth Games in Vancouver. Garrard won three gold medals, over a 20 year period, starting in London in 1934 and ending in Vancouver in 1954, becoming the first Australian athlete to participate in four editions of the Games. If not the suspension of the Games due to World War II, it’s possible Garrard could have competed in six Games, given his remarkable thirty-year career which also included representing Australia at three Olympics. Winning all but nine of his 525 bouts in his career, Garrard held an impressive streak between 1930 and 1956, where he won every Victorian title and ten national titles in the lightweight and light welterweight classes. Unbeaten in Australia for 25 years, Garrard won gold medals in London 1934 and Sydney 1938, then after a 12-year gap due to the WWII, Garrard sensationally returned to win gold in Auckland in 1950. During Garrard’s final Empire Games in 1954, he claimed the bronze medal. Winning Olympic silver in London in 1948, Garrard sadly was forced to withdraw from the Melbourne 1956 Olympic team due to a dislocated shoulder, this brought an unfortunate end to his storied career. Garrard was section manager of the wrestling team at the 1956 Empire and Commonwealth Games in Cardiff. An inaugural inductee into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame in 1985, Dick Garrard is one of Australia’s greatest wrestlers.
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