In an amateur career spanning over 13 years Tony Madigan is Australia's best-performed amateur boxer. At the Olympics, he competed in Helsinki 1952, Melbourne 1956 and Rome 1960. He missed going to Tokyo 1964 when he was defeated by Fred Casey in the final of the Olympic trials.
At Rome, Madigan won a bronze medal after losing to a precocious Cassius Clay (now known as Muhammad Ali) in a semi-final. Madigan won three medals in the Empire and Commonwealth Games at Vancouver 1954 (silver), Cardiff 1958 (gold) and Perth 1962 (gold). He had many successful amateur bouts in the United Kingdom and the United States. Outside of boxing Madigan did some modelling.