Olympic24: Two wins out of three for Britain's boxers

Olympic24: Two wins out of three for Britain's boxers

07 October 2015 / 06:59
Pat McCormack and Harvey Horn win their first set of preliminaries at the Amateur World Boxing Championships but there is an early exit for Qais Ashfaq. Catch up on the news from the last 24 hours here.
  • Pat McCormack and Harvey Horn off to a winning start in Doha but Qais Ashfaq loses on a split decision
  • Zoe Smith leads eight-strong Great Britain team at weightlifting World Championships
  • Taekwondo’s Charlie Maddock adjusting to life in the spotlight

McCormack and Horn victorious but Ashfaq misses out


It was a mixed bag for Great Britain on day one of the Amateur World Boxing Championships in Doha, with wins for Pat McCormack and Harvey Horn but a narrow defeat for Qais Ashfaq.

Light welter-weight McCormack kicked things off in promising style with a unanimous victory of Moldovan southpaw Dmitri Galagot.

While Horn outboxed Indian Commonwealth Games champion Devendo Laishram at light fly-weight.

However bantamweight Qais Ashfaq was unable to make it three from three with two judges scoring the bout a draw and Russian Bakhtovar Nazirov taking the split decision.

McCormack now faces Vitaly Dunaytsev who beat him in the final of the European Championships in Bulgaria this summer while Horn faces fellow Russian European champion Vasiliy Egorov.

Smith to make World Championship return


Commonwealth champion Zoe Smith will contest her first major international since Glasgow 2014 after being named in the Great Britain weightlifting team for the 2015 World Championships.

Due to injuries and illness, Smith has been absent from the major international competitions for a little over a year but returns for the Worlds in Houston, America from November 20-28.

The competition represents another step on the road to Rio with combined results from the 2014 and 2015 Worlds securing the top 24 nations places at next year’s Games.

Great Britain fielded only two athletes at last year’s events, meaning the 2016 European Championships in Forde, Norway are instead most likely to represent a crucial qualifier for the team.

And Smith, who competed at London 2012, admitted her first task would be on putting on a show on her return to the World stage.

"My focus, first and foremost will be on giving my all and improving my personal bests," she said.

She will be joined on the women’s team by Emily Godley, Sarah Davies, Rebekah Tiler and Mercy Brown while Gareth Evans, Jack Oliver and Sonny Webster make up the men’s team.

Maddock reflects on Baku success


European Games champion Charlie Maddock admits she is still adjusting to life as a major competition winner.

Taekwondo fighter Maddock picked up gold at the inaugural European Games in Baku this summer, beating Serbia’s Tijana Bogdanovic in a golden point final.

Further medal success has followed in Israel and Poland with Maddock admitting her name is more widely known now in the public.

The former kickboxer will be in action on home soil at the Manchester Grand Prix later this month.

And while making a late push for qualification for the Olympics in the -49kg class may prove just out of her reach, Maddock insists she is hungry to keep progressing.

"I still haven't got used to being in front of cameras and it took a long time to sink in in Baku because everybody wanted to talk to me," said Maddock.

"I'd never experienced anything like it and it was a bit overwhelming. People were coming up to me in the street saying they'd seen me in Baku and well done for the gold.

"Lots of people think I'm going to go to Rio and win the gold medal. I have to explain to them that it doesn't work like that - qualifying is very hard and I might not make it.

"But my experience has just made me get back in the gym and get even hungrier to compete and see where it takes me. Being on the GB squad has become part of my life and I am loving it."

Sportsbeat 2015