Shirecliffe boxer Tom McAssey knows he is playing catch-up when it comes to other fighters in Sheffield.
A limited amateur background has seen the Ingle-trained southpaw, aged 22, endure a rocky start to professional boxing but he remains unbeaten from four fights. Two of the wins were scraped but whilst other Sheffield boxers have been learning their trade from being kids, McAssey only showed up at the gym aged 14 and that kid is unrecognisable from the 6’2, lanky light-middleweight of today.
McAssey said: “At 14 I was about five foot three and about 13 stone. Just to turn amateur I did well and now I’m living the dream as a professional. I lost my first four amateur fights on points and started to doubt myself. In my fifth fight I stopped the opponent in 30 seconds and that was the turning point. My key is work ethic. I’m never out of the gym and love training. I’m mentally strong and willing to spar with everyone.”
A quarter Irish paternally McAssey knows that is an option when it comes to title-chasing but he is currently being held back by a hand injury.
“I’ve got more family in Ireland than I have in Sheffield so it’s a possibility” he added.
“I’d love to fight Lewis Taylor (from Dronfield) again. He beat me twice in the amateurs but I’ve improved since then.”
n Rotherham-born Ryan Hardy fights in Norwich on November 23.