Thain close to Lonsdale opportunity

Martin Chesnutt
26/09/2016 8:09pm

John Thain is relishing the challenge of Saturday's British Welterweight title eliminator, as he explains to Boxing Monthly ...

A curious 14-year old John Thain was taken into a boxing gym for the first time by two friends. 14 years later, and the Edinburgh boxer is one win away from a shot at the British welterweight title.

His boxing hero Sugar Ray Leonard made a huge mark as a welterweight, and Thain, with a 15-2 record, is hoping the timing is right for him to put a belt around his waist and play a part in Edinburgh and Scotland’s boxing revival.

“Alex Arthur, he was the top man and he brought shows into Edinburgh," Thain told me. "Sky Sports, everyone was interested in boxing. Now we’ve got this scene where there are so many fighters coming through. There’s going to be guys winning titles.”

He added, “I’ve been boxing professionally since 2010, and I would love to be that guy to win belts. It would be great to bring belts back to Edinburgh.”

Being part of the thriving MGM boxing promotional outfit, with gyms in Marbella, Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester, and Glasgow, has not only opened doors, but also reinvigorated Thain’s career.

“I was actually on a losing run the first time I went out there [Marbella] and was treated so well. They have a really fresh approach, and I knew I wanted to be part of this team. Everybody works together, and it lifts you. MGM are going places, and they’ve got some great fighters.”

Their upcoming Glasgow show on 1 October will be shown live on BoxNation, a huge exposure opportunity, and it’s put a bounce in the step of everyone involved.

“It’s been a couple of years since I’ve been on television, and I’ve missed it. Some guys shy away from that, but I really like the extra buzz you get. I’m ready to rise to the occasion. I know I’m going to have to perform, but we’re prepared. It’s been a really good camp.”

The man standing between Thain and a shot a the current Lonsdale welterweight title holder Bradley Skeete, is Liverpool’s Nathan Brough. Although he has 13 wins from 14 outings, Brough has only fought once since 2014, but Thain knows he cannot afford to be complacent.

“He’s a good boxer, he does everything well, and every fight at this level is a tough fight. But, we’re ready for it.”

Although he hopes boxing in Scotland will give him an advantage, Thain's belief is that as the work has been done in the gym, that is what will bring him through on the night.

“I’ve been the away guy as well, but you’re only in control of your effort. The only thing you can control is yourself. While he’s been inactive, he’ll be up for the fight, but I’m ready. I think it’s going to be a good fight.”

The stakes are high, and you can watch this British welterweight title eliminator live on Saturday 1 October at the Bellahouston Sports Centre in Glasgow, as well as live on BoxNation.