Luke McCormack must be fully aware of an old boxing adage tonight: Beware the late substitute.
The Washington talent bids to add another title to his glittering career this evening when he takes part in the GB Championship in Sheffield.
McCormack contests the U60 kilo final at a sold-out English Institute of Sport, but NOT against the opponent he had trained for.
The 20-year-old had been expecting a North East derby with Hartlepool’s Adam Cope, but the 19-year-old has pulled out with back trouble.
McCormack had beaten the Gus Robinson Developments ABC prospect in a bloodbath on the way to ABA Championship glory in Liverpool in April.
Now, the Birtley ABC star takes on another teenage talent, Jordan Flynn, over three potentially explosive rounds.
McCormack will be looking to prove his position as Britain’s number one tonight.
Defeat is unlikely, almost unthinkable, but Luke – one half of the twin McCormack fighting unit with brother Pat – will want to cement his spot.
Luke, who reached the last 16 of the European Games in the summer, and is chasing a Team GB spot at next year’s Olympics.
There are three qualifying events to come for McCormack and his team-mates, in Istanbul and Sofia in May, then the inal World Olympicqualifying event in Baku in June.
BABA’s performance director, Rob McCracken has warned his established stars that the challengers this evening will be desperate to impress.
“This tournament is a great opportunity to look at some of the up-and-coming talent in Great Britain,” said Carl Froch’s trainer. “It’s a chance for some boxers to stake their claim for a place on the World Class Performance Programme and showcase their talent.”