Britain's most feared and avoided fighter from 1939-48
World Boxing Hall of Fame inductee 2006,only Britain's 6th boxer to recieve the honour!
Bert trained Bernard Rea, as well as he coached many great Scot's fighters, among them Chic Calderwood, John McCormack and Walter McGowan... His own career is a virtual who's who of British greats, from Boxing's greatest period; himself one of them. ONLY the 6th British fighter in history to be inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame!
He may very well be... Britain's greatest middleweight!
Benny Lynch's boxing career was over by the time he was 25 and he battled with alcohol for the rest of his life. He was a pathetic sight in the streets and pubs of Glasgow where people pressed drinks on him when a square meal was what he needed. The man who had so much talent died in 1946 from malnutrition, aged 33, a lonely misfit in the city that loved and broke him.
His record for the seven years of his professional career was:
Total Bouts: 102
Won: 77 (includes 15 knockouts)
Lost: 10 (one knockout, in his last fight)
He was inducted into the International Boxing Hall Of Fame in 1998. A film about the life of Benny Lynch, directed by John Mackenzie and starring Robert Carlyle, was made in 2003.
Name:Jim Watt Career Record:click Nationality: British Hometown: Glasgow, Scotland Born: 1948-07-18 Stance: Southpaw
As an amateur Watt, was the 1968 ABA lightweight champion.
Preceded by: Roberto Duran
WBC Lightweight Champion
1979 Apr 17 – 1981 Jun 20
Succeeded by: Alexis Arguello
Richard McTaggartMBE (born: October 15, 1935) was a British amateur boxer, who competed at two Olympic games as a Lightweight (1956, 1960), and one as a Light welterweight (1964). McTaggart won the gold medal in 1956, and was awarded the Val Barker Trophy, as the games outstanding boxer. He won the bronze medal in 1960, and was eliminated in the 3rd round in 1964. McTaggart was also a five-time ABA champion (1956, 1958, 1960, 1963 and 1965). McTaggert purportedly won 610 of his 634 amateur bouts.
McTaggart won 610 of his 634 amateur fights. He was the first British boxer to compete in three Olympic Games (1956, 1960, 1964). In 1956, McTaggart won the gold medal for the lightweight division in the Olympic Games at Melbourne. He was also awarded the Val Barker Trophy for the most stylish boxer and in 1960, he won an Olympic bronze medal in Rome.
Olympic gold medal, lightweight, 1956
Olympic bronze medal, lightweight, 1960 British Commonwealth champion, 1958 British Empire silver medal, 1963
Compiled an amateur record of 103-6 (51 knockouts).
Held Scottish and A.B.A. Light Middleweight Titles in 1956 as an amateur.
Represented the United Kingdom at the 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne, earning a Bronze Medal after losing in the semifinals to Jose Torres of the United States.
John McDermott MBE
With many thanks to Bernard Rea
Shortly after publishing the news that trainer John McDermott had been awarded an MBE in the Queen's Boirthday Honours List, we received an email from an old friend of John's, ex-professional boxer Bernard Rea who now lives in Canada.
"When I read your information on the MBE bestowed on John I was overjoyed," wrote Bernard. "It couldn't happen to a nicer or more dedicated person in the sport of boxing. John McDermott was an excellent boxer and always the perfect gentleman in a time when the sport was much tougher and classier than today."
Bernard then wrote again about John's past and talked about boxing at the time they both fought out of the N.B. Loco Amateur Boxing Club in Springburn, Glasgow. It made fascinating reading and serves as a fitting tribute to John McDermott MBE.
Over to Bernard:
I first met John McDermott on a Camping Holiday in Kingsdown, Kent, when we were both in the Boy Scouts. John's uncle, Terry McDermott, who was also a School Teacher, was one of the Boy Scout Leaders and another real gem of a person.
Then I met John again as a member of the North British Loco Amateur Boxing Club in Springburn, Glasgow. John was also a member and a real classy boxer too.
The N.B. was a tremendous venue for boxing shows every Thursday night during the amateur boxing season. John was a regular on these shows along with guys like the McMillan brothers, Alex, Donald and John.
At that time even John "Cowboy" McCormack was a member of the N.B. as it was affectionately known.
When the N.B. closed its doors we all went our separate ways and ended up in different clubs around Glasgow and the surrounding areas but always remained good friends. Boxing was a fantastic sport for meetings all kinds of people and making great and lasting friendships.
John, of course, went on to eventually win the Western Districts, the Scottish Amateur Boxing Association and the British Amateur Boxing Association Titles at Featherweight.
Following those victories John went to the Commonwealth Games in Perth, Australia, to win a Gold Medal at the same weight.
I had taken another path and eventually moved to Jersey, Channel Islands, where, in 1961, I was awarded the Amateur Boxing, Middleweight Title. I then went on to represent Jersey in the English Southern Districts Championships held at Nine Elms Baths, Battersea, and won the Light Middleweight Crown.
Following the South West's, I went to the Royal Albert Hall and won the London Districts A.B. Lt. Middleweight Title.
After winning the London's, I then went to Wembley for the A.B.A. Finals and, unfortunately, lost to another great Amateur Boxer in his time, Bobby Keddie in the semi's.
When I returned to Jersey, following the A.B.A.'s, I was also chosen to represent them in the same Commonwealth Games attended by John. However, being rather impatient and somewhat impetuous I chose to turn professional and, in retrospect to my regret, did not attend the Games.
John McDermott went to those Games, against great odds to overcome the Scottish Selectors, and I am sorry I wasn't there to cheer him on in person.
John McDermott is a real life Champion. Thank God there are people like him who are willing to dedicate their time and patience for the good of youth and eventual benefit of our communities.
By the way, John is also the trainer and coach of another handy young boxer, Ross Naismith, who won the Western Districts A.B. Title at Welterweight, and is also a relative of my wife. I would like to think he is still training with John and still doing well.
Thanks again to Bernard for the above. It would be great to hear from others with tributes and memories of John for us to add to this page.