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G-Train halted: Liddard stops McCormack in opening round

Graham McCormack’s hopes of upsetting Matchroom middleweight prospect George Liddard were quashed in Leeds.

Liddard halted the G-Train on the tracks at the First Direct Arena.

Liddard (7-0, 4KOs) stopped McCormack (9-4-1, 1KO) after 88 seconds of the opening round of their scheduled eight-rounder on the Taylor-Caterall undercard.

McCormack, the 37-year-old Limerick southpaw, was the underdog; a position he is well accustomed to.

McCormack pondered the future after a draw with Octavian Gratii at the Red Cow in February.

When referee Padraig O Reachtagain called stalemate on the bout, McCormack wondered if he’d lace the gloves again.

The Ian Gaughran-managed McCormack jumped at the chance to dance with Liddard, a 21-year-old highly touted by Eddie Hearn.

“So f**k it I’ve nothing to lose,” McCormack told Irish-boxing.com during the week.
His previous losses were all in title fights, at the hands of Craig McCarthy, Fearghus Quinn and Paul Kean.

This was billed as a test for Liddard, who notably already had his next fight – against Grant Dennis at the end of June in Brentwood – lined up before this one.

It was Liddard’s first slate for eight rounds and McCormack the first southpaw he met in his still-fledgling pro journey.

From the first bell, it was clear that Liddard was on a mission and McCormack went down under an explosive right from Liddard inside the opening minute.

The wind was taken from McCormack before the sails had a chance to be hoisted.

Liddard sensed his chance – and took it with lethal execution. Under a barrage from the Englishman, McCormack went down in the neutral corner and was unable to beat Michael Alexander’s count.

“I come to fight,” Liddard said. “I saw a couple of openings and I took them. I’m excited for what’s to come.”