WSB Boxer of the Week 6 – Pat McCormack, British Lionhearts

Following another triumphant WSB display from the team on 18 February, British Lionhearts’ Pat McCormack has been named Boxer of the Week for Season VI Week 6. The light welterweight saw off the challenge of Mexico Guerreros’ Rio 2016 qualifier Raul Curiel to give the home side an unassailable 3-0 lead and help make it three wins from three so far this campaign.

Pat McCormack was born in Sunderland in 1995, where he trains alongside his twin brother Luke at the Birtley Boxing Club under coach Graeme Rutherford. In 2010, McCormack took his first national title at junior level, following it up with a first international gold at the European Junior Championships in Hungary a year later.

The rapid ascent to the top of the junior level was completed when McCormack travelled to Astana, Kazakhstan for the 2011 AIBA Junior World Boxing Championships, where he beat India’s Naveen Kumar to take the gold.

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English and British youth titles followed in 2013, leading to a call up for the national elite squad and a return to Kazakhstan where McCormack won both his contests against strong Russian and Uzbek rivals. A first national elite title came in 2014 and a place on the team for the Commonwealth Games, where he was part of one of the bouts of the tournament against Welsh star Joseph Cordina, ending in a narrow defeat.

Moving up to light welterweight in 2015, McCormack grabbed silver at the prestigious Bocskai Memorial Tournament and secured another national title before a brilliant run at the European Confederation Championships in Bulgaria was only halted by Russian World Champion Vitaly Dunaytsev in the gold-medal bout. The result led to a place at the AIBA World Championships in Doha, where the Russian star once again stopped his title chase.

McCormack opened his WSB campaign this year with a spectacular triumph over USA Knockouts’ young Gary Russell in Miami, but it was the Week 6 match-up against Mexico Guerreros Raul Curiel that proved the real test of how far the 20 year-old has come. The unanimous judges decision in the Brit’s favour after five rounds against Mexico’s Olympic hopeful will have given McCormack a real taste of what he has to do to get to Rio and push for a podium finish.

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