SCOTTISH heavyweights Gary Cornish and Jay Carrigan-McFarlane both described MTK Scotland as “taking over” Scottish boxing under the leadership of Sam Kynoch. Here’s what he had to say about it ahead of MTK Scotland’s Capital Collision promotion, which will be screened live on BoxNation this Friday.
“I just think it’d be a massive shot in the arm if we can have more champions after Friday. We’ve got lots of boxers looking to come on board, we’ve got an existing stable which is in a good state and I think the future’s a bright one,” Kynoch told Boxing News.
“I’ve got a lot of ambition and hunger as does everyone else in MTK. The aim is to keep busy and keep growing. It’s about evolving.”
Scottish boxing is definitely evolving. If Gary Cornish claims the British heavyweight title on Friday he’ll be the first Scotsman to do so. Meanwhile stablemate Stephen Simmons competes for the IBF European Cruiserweight Title against 9-1 prospect, Simon Barclay.
Kynoch is clearly overjoyed with his stable’s progress, on former Anthony Joshua opponent, Cornish, he says, “We’re making history. Should we have a Londsdale belt holder come Saturday I’ll be very pleased and very proud, and on a personal level delighted for Gary. He’s a gentleman and he deserves all the success he gets”.
The promoter is confident of his charge’s title chances too, arguing that Sam Sexton (despite his experience,) has been “treading water for some time”. On future prospects for the Scottish heavyweight giant Kynoch remains optimistic “It would be a great boost for his career. If he wins the Lonsdale belt it would open up a plethora of options in what is a great division domestically… There’s great fights out there for Gary and doors are going to open for him.”
When asked if, should both fighters defeat their opponents in October, a British showdown between Gary Cornish and Dave Allen could be on the cards, Sam didn’t rule it out, saying “It’d be a great fight. The Dave Allen fight’s one I think is very winnable for Gary. To take both belts would be great… If they can both get through their respective fights I think that would make sense for definite.”
Dave Allen’s cult following and the keen cross-border rivalry could make a potential match-up a winner for fans. If both win in October it would also see the British heavyweight champion face off against the Commonwealth heavyweight champion.
Elsewhere on the Card Stephen Simmons has seen a last minute replacement as his opponent for the British Cruiserweight Title, Matty Askin, withdrew through injury. As Sam explained, “in stepped Simon Barclay, who’s 9-1. I’ve managed to secure the IBF European belt for it, so Stephen’s delighted in the circumstances, the IBF belt is a great replacement.”
Rather than the (all too common,) Eastern European journeyman replacement, MTK Scotland have, to their credit, found a young, hungry, British fighter. Kynoch described Barclay as “a UK opponent coming in full of ambition, Simon sees it as a big opportunity. It’s come out of the blue and at short notice but he was already in the gym… he certainly can’t be overlooked.”
In his closing remarks Sam Kynoch sounded optimistic about the state of Scottish boxing. For a nation in which the sport has limped along, for too long, using Alex Arthur and Ricky Burn as crutches, more stars are emerging and big nights of Scottish boxing look increasingly likely. Sam argued, “The more big nights we can get like this the better, but that’s not to undermine the smaller shows, we’ve got three shows in three weeks! We’re keeping our boxers active and busy so they can get out there and build their records. There’s lots of new boxers coming on board and we’re developing the stable we already have.” Watch this space for a crop of great fighters north of the border.
MTK Scotland’s Capital Collision promotion takes place this Friday at Edinburgh’s Meadowbank Sports Centre. Gary Cornish and Sam Sexton headline in their heavyweight contest for the British Title.