/ Boxing

Tommy McCarthy aims for Glasgow gold

Updated: Friday, 19 Jul 2013 10:57 | Comments

Tommy McCarthy: 'I am looking forward to fighting in front of my family as I do not get that chance too often'
Tommy McCarthy: 'I am looking forward to fighting in front of my family as I do not get that chance too often'

Belfast heavyweight Tommy McCarthy will go to Glasgow intent on annexing an elusive Commonwealth gold medal and writing another successful chapter in the history of Northern Irish boxing.

McCarthy was part of the extraordinarily successful Northern Ireland team which claimed three gold medals in the Delhi boxing ring in 2010, while McCarthy himself took home light-heavyweight silver.

But big-hitting McCarthy returned from India disappointed by the manner of his 8-1 final defeat to Scotland's Callum Johnson - and made a vow he would work extra hard to put things right in 2014.

McCarthy told PA Sport: "Gold was there for the taking for me in Delhi and I felt embarrassed at losing the way I did in front of so many people. I told myself I would not let it happen again.

"Looking back now, I know I went away with a lot of positives. I was only 19 years old and very inexperienced. It was my first major tournament and I think the whole occasion got a bit much for me."

"I think the whole occasion got a bit much for me" - Tommy McCarthy

Despite missing out on a place at London 2012, McCarthy has since had a successful move up to the heavyweight division, clattering to the Irish title and reaching the quarter-finals of the European Championships in Minsk.

A close points defeat to Azerbaijan's Olympic medallist Teymur Mammadov was no disgrace, and McCarthy insisted: "It gave me the belief that I belong in there and now I go into every tournament convinced I can win it."

McCarthy, who trains at the Oliver Plunkett club in Andersonstown, is part of a burgeoning Belfast amateur boxing scene which yielded two 2012 Olympic medallists in Paddy Barnes and Michael Conlan.

Sean McComb is another reigning Irish senior champion from the city and McCarthy believes the team's recent success can spur them on to another historic boxing medal haul in Glasgow.

"We all train at different gyms in the city but we're all close and the Belfast boxing scene is booming," McCarthy added.

"Just like last time, there are guys you might not even know yet who could come out and win a medal.

"I am looking forward to fighting in front of my family as I do not get that chance too often.

"Plus I was beaten by a Scottish fighter in the final last time, so it will be fitting for me to go out in Scotland and get the gold."

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