Lochend Boxing Club coach Terry McCormack believes new British 52kg champion Matty McHale is destined for “big things” in the sport.
The Edinburgh amateur boxer defeated England’s Muzzy Yuyana by a split decision at Sheffield’s Institute of Sport on Thursday night to win his first national title. McHale lost out to rival Reece McFadden in the Scottish final in March but was put forward to represent his country this week where he took full advantage of the opportunity.
The 20-year-old was distraught to learn last month he had been overlooked for the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, next April – that position going to current Scottish champion McFadden.
However, McCormack is of the mindset that McHale has the beating of any flyweight in the country and would have been in the mix for a medal Down Under had he been the one boarding the plane in four months time.
“Matty is just getting better and better with every bout. He was absolutely sublime on Thursday night and is such a good boxer to watch,” McCormack said. “He does everything right that you want to see in a fighter. I’ve got really big hopes for him so he has a bright future. He lives in the gym, he doesn’t drink and is such a clean-living laddie. He’s probably one of the most dedicated boxers I’ve ever worked with.
“We were over in Eindhoven six weeks ago at a tournament with Scotland and he won gold there. He has no fear about him and will fight anyone.
“He’s absolutely gutted not to be going to Australia – heartbroken, to be honest – so winning the British title is a great boost for him. All the British champions are also being invited to the GB headquarters with a chance to impress and earn a contract with the development team, so he has that to look forward to aswell. He’s good enough and young enough to get on it, I’m sure of it.”
“We’ll go for the next Games in 2022 as he’ll still be young enough but he should have been given the chance next year. He makes the weight better than Reece and would have beaten him in the Scottish final had they not clashed heads that led to Matty sustaining a bad cut. This is just the start, though, as he’s going places and won’t stop until he gets there.”