Won both singles and doubles

Published in 20th-century / Contemporary History, Features, Issue 4 (July/August 2012), Volume 20

Boland (wearing a hat) in action in the singles final against Dionysios Kasdaglis (out of shot), an Alexandrian Greek. (IOC Lausanne)

Boland (wearing a hat) in action in the singles final against Dionysios Kasdaglis (out of shot), an Alexandrian Greek. (IOC Lausanne)

The Dubliner won both of his matches in the group stage of the singles competition, although it may seem curious that one of the rubbers was a best-of-five-set affair, while the other was best-of-three. This was due to the cold and wet weather in Athens that April, which curtailed the length of the contests. The fact that many players had to play at least two games a day owing to the co-scheduling of the doubles event was also a factor. In any event, Boland went on to win his singles semi-final against a Greek opponent, and the final against Dionysios Kasdaglis (a Greek who lived in Alexandria, Egypt) on a score of 6–2, 6–2. The tennis finals were played in the infield area of the Athens velodrome, which had three hard courts, whereas the group matches had been at a local lawn tennis club. Boland received identical prizes when he won the doubles, partnering Fritz Traun of Hamburg to defeat the Greek pairing of Kasdaglis and Dimitrios Petrokokkinis 5–7, 6–3, 6–3. The curiosity of an Irishman partnering a German in the doubles is easily explained: the number of entries was so low that combinations of mixed nationalities were accepted in order to make up doubles pairings.

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