Marcus Temple was never far away from boxing and after having won a bronze medal at the Empire Games in Auckland, New Zealand, and the South African professional flyweight title he remained in the sport as an administrator for many years.
Born in Luanshaya of the then Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia) on 21 April 1932 and named Marcus William, he started boxing at an early age and was an outstanding amateur.
He won the South African amateur title in the flyweight class in 1949 and then went on to take the bronze medal at the 1950 Empire Games.
The 1950 Games were the fourth staging of what is now called the Commonwealth games and were held between 4 and 11 February.
The boxing tournament was held in the Auckland Town Hall on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.
In his first fight he beat Ronnie Muir from Canada on points and in his next bout he also outpointed Scotland’s H. Riley. In the semifinal he met “Rangy” K. Edwin of Ceylon but the longer reach of Edwin helped him outscore Temple over three rounds.
In the box-off for third place Temple’ opponent never arrived and as a result he was awarded the bronze medal.
On his return to South Africa, he turned professional and in the same year on 1 July he outpointed Plasie Fourie over four rounds.
After three more victories he was knocked out in the seventh round by Tiny Corbett (real name Danie van Tonder) in their second fight, after winning on points in their first encounter.
Temple then beat Herby Andre and Jan van Zyl on points to finish his first year in the pro ranks with six wins and one defeat.
In his first fight in 1951 he outpointed Des Williams who had represented South Africa at the 1948 London Olympics.
He then stopped Herby Andre, Tiny Corbett, and Johnny Engelbrecht before winning the South African flyweight title at the City Hall in Durban on 26 July, when he knocked out Kalla Persson in the seventh round.
His only loss in 1951 was to a Frenchman, Georges Mousse, who outpointed him over ten rounds on 30 November in Durban. Mousse also drew with world bantamweight champion Vic Toweel, who beat him on points in two other close fights.
Trained by former South African bantamweight champion Johnny Holt, Temple retained the SA flyweight title in two fights against Persson before fighting to a draw and losing on points on two occasions against a cagey Italian, Tino Cardinale.
After that he took a break to concentrate on his studies as an accountant and was inactive for over two years. He returned on 1 February 1955 to beat Willie van der Merwe on points over six rounds.
After losing to Gerry Jooste in March and again on 23 May, Temple retired at the age of 23 to concentrate on his business career. He finished with a record of 18-4-1, including six knockouts.
He remained in boxing as chairman of the Cape Provincial Boxing Board for many years and served as a member on the SA National Boxing Board.
He died in Cape Town on Saturday, 13 October 2012 at the age of 80.