Ben Whittaker won a silver medal but was foiled by wily Cuban Arlen Lopez in the Olympic lightweight final on Wednesday morning.
Whittaker’s is the second silver for team GB boxers – Pat McCormack won the same in the welterweight division – among a record six medals that will be brought back from Tokyo 2020.
But Whittaker’s bid for the Games’ first British boxing gold medal was thwarted by Lopez, who became a back-to-back Olympic champion after also winning at Rio 2016.
Lopez won a split decision to leave Whittaker’s head in his hands.
Whittaker’s nimble footwork and quick jab were impressive, but the judges didn’t score the first round in his favor.
Lopez managed to close the distance against the much taller and tidier Whittaker who was forced to miss too many punches.
An exciting rally towards the end of the second saw both men land, but Whittaker’s left hook was the most important shot and clearly annoyed his Cuban rival.
Whittaker was unable to force the issue on the final round, as veteran Lopez controlled the procedure by switching between orthodox and southpaw.
In addition to silver medals for Whittaker and McCormack, Frazer Clarke and Karriss Artingstall will take bronze.
Galal Yafai at flyweight and Lauren Price at middleweight are expected to compete in the semi-finals.