Wearside-born boxing duo Pat and Luke McCormack amongst medals in Belgrade tournament

Washington-born boxing duo Pat and Luke McCormack have stepped up their Olympic hopes in return to action.

The brothers returned to amateur boxing following a long lay-off caused by the Coronavirus.

The tournament, which was part of the squad’s preparations for the forthcoming European Olympic qualifier in Paris, marked a return to action after more than a year as a result of the global pandemic

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Men and women from the Great Britain Boxing squad enjoyed a memorable return to competition this week after winning 10 medals at the Belgrade Winner Tournament including golds for Rosie Eccles, Ben Whittaker and Frazer Clarke.

Great Britain's Pat Mccormack celebrates winning against Kazakhstan's Ablaikhan Zhussupov during the Men's Light Welter (64kg) match at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Riocentro - Pavilion 6 in Rio de Janeiro on August 11, 2016.

The team also featured highly-rated brothers Pat and Luke McCormack.

The final haul was made up of three golds, one silver and six bronze as 10 of the 11 boxers selected by GB Boxing to take part in the tournament secured a medal.

The 10 medal haul was completed by bronze medals for Caroline Dubois, Pat McCormack, Luke McCormack, Cheavon Clarke, Galal Yafai and Peter McGrail.

Pat McCormack and Caroline Dubois can consider themselves unfortunate to have not gone further in the competition.

The pair looked to have done enough to win their respective semi-finals but saw the judges’ give split decision victories to their opponents from Serbia (McCormack) and Italy (Dubois).

GB Boxing’s performance director Rob McCracken, who also trains world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, said: “All boxers have performed superbly and been a credit to GB Boxing.

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“The priority at this tournament was to ensure the boxers got some good quality competition after such a long lay-off, so to see them deliver a number of excellent performances and return with 10 medals has been a big success. We ought to have had more boxers in the finals, but overall it has been a very useful week that has enabled the team to secure some good action and get back into the routine of competing.

“The focus now is on the Olympic qualifier (in Paris, 4-8 June 2021) and making sure the boxers are well prepared and in the best possible shape to secure their place at Tokyo 2021.”

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