The Olympic 50p coins are amongst some of the most sought-after by collectors, and in this article, we will take an in-depth look at the Wrestling 50p.
The 50p Wrestling coin is worth about £9.34 according to the most recent values in 2022 on eBay.
How Rare is the Wrestling 50p?
The Wrestling coin designed for the 50p coin is the last in the 29-Olympic coin set to be minted and is considered to be a very scarce find.
This coin proves that what is last is not always the least. Even though it was the last coin minted, it is the second rarest of the set according to mintage figures.
Mintage of the Wrestling Coin
The total mintage of the Wrestling 50 pence Coin that entered circulation was 1,129,500. This is quite a small amount for a 50p coin and explains why it is considered to be rare amongst coin collectors.
The Wrestling 50 pence coin was also minted in a couple of different versions, which are summarised below:
- A specimen in card variety where the Wrestling 50p coin was 29/29 meaning it was the last of the series to be minted. It was issued in a set of London 2012 Sports collection Collector Album with an unknown mintage.
- Silver Brilliant Uncirculated with an unknown mintage and a limit of 30,000 in 0.925 Silver. It was issued in the London 2012 Silver 50p Sports Collection set of 29 coins.
- Gold Proof FDC with one issued in 0.917 Gold unique and presented to the artist.
Meaning Behind The Wrestling Coin
To pay tribute to the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, the Royal Mint released 29 coins in 2011. Each coin depicted a different sport that was part of the Olympics athletic competitions. The Wrestling 50 pence coin represented the sport of wrestling.
Wrestling was one of the original sports included in the ancient Olympic Games in Greece in 776 BC. Wrestling is a sport in which two athletes compete in two, 3-minute rounds. It can be done freestyle or Greco-Roman style. Freestyle wrestling involves the whole body.
Whereas, Greco-Roman style involves the upper body only. Greco-Roman is the original style of wrestling. Freestyle eventually became popular across the United States and the UK. Both styles are now an Olympic event.
In the 2012 London Olympics, freestyle and Greco-Roman style were split among the men’s competition. However, the women took part only in the freestyle events. A total of 18 gold medals were awarded for the sport. Russia took home the most medals.
The 2012 Summer Olympics logo seen at the top of the coin’s reverse was designed by Wolff Olins consultancy firm.
Design of the Wrestling 50 Pence Coin
In addition to the standard 50p designs, several reverse designs have been minted on the 50p coin to commemorate important events.
This coin was designed to celebrate Wrestling as an Olympic sport and is part of the special 2012 London Olympic coins minted. A total of 29 Olympic coins were minted to commemorate this special occasion.
It consists of a Cupro-nickel alloy with an 8.00g weight, a diameter of 27.3mm, and it is 1.78mm thick.
The Obverse design is that of a mature crowned head of Queen Elizabeth II designed by Ian Rank-Broadley. The image features Her Majesty facing right and wearing the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland diamond tiara. The tiara had been a wedding gift from Queen Mary, her grandmother, in 1947. She is seen wearing this tiara in the Machin and Gottwald portraits as well.
In this version, her mature head is crowned and facing right. Surrounding her portrait are the words ELIZABETH II * D * G * REG * F * D * 2011 which is abbreviated from Dei Gratia Regina meaning Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, Queen, Defender of the Faith. Small letters just below her head are the signature mark of the artist, Ian Rank-Broadley, IRB.
The edge is plain with no inscription.
The reverse side features an image of the London 2012 logo positioned above an image of two wrestlers competing in an arena. At the bottom of the reverse side of the coin are the words 50 PENCE to indicate the coin’s value.
About The Reverse Image Designer
The Reverse image is designed by Roderick Enriquez. Enriquez was a graphic designer from London and was one of 29 people who were chosen by the Royal Mint’s 2009 competition to design 50p coins to represent Olympic sporting events. The competition was open to the public which was a rare opportunity.
When Roderick Enriquez was asked about being chosen to design one of the Olympic coins, he said, “I simply cannot believe it as I know there were thousands upon thousands of entries submitted to this competition! I’m so delighted to have won.”
He was also delighted that, as a Filipino-British national, he was chosen as he saw it as an opportunity to represent the many cultural backgrounds that make up the London population. He chose to design the wrestling coin to represent both the ancient and modern aspects of the sport.
Where You Can Buy The Wrestling 50p Coin
One of the fastest and easiest ways to shop for coins is online. The average selling price on eBay is £9.02 for this specific profile of the 2011 Wrestling 50p coin. Of course, the actual price will depend largely on the condition of the actual coin.