British boxing duo Pat McCormack and Ben Whittaker are guaranteed Olympic medals after reaching the semi-finals of the welterweight and light-heavyweight competitions respectively.
McCormack arrived in Tokyo as one of Team GB’s leading medal hopes across any sport and beat Uzbekistan’s Bobo-Usmon Baturov 4-1 on points in his quarter-final on Friday, despite being cut by a clash of heads. He will now face Ireland’s Aidan Walsh in the semi-finals, with the loser picking up bronze and the winner going on to fight for gold.
“It’s unbelievable, it’s something I’ve always dreamed of, to get a medal at the Olympics,” McCormack said. “But now’s the time to change the colour. Gold is the dream and then I’ve completed amateur boxing.
“I’m getting better in each fight, I’m warming into the tournament and hopefully I just keep getting better.”
Whittaker, meanwhile, overcame Brazil’s Keno Machado 3-2 on points and will take on Imam Khataev of the Russian Olympic Committee for a place in the final.
“I’ve said after every fight that a bronze is nothing, a silver is nothing. But when you actually do get that feeling, I couldn’t help but let the emotion out of me,” the 24-year-old said.
“I was crying, bogeys were flying everywhere! I tried to keep as calm as I could, but I couldn’t help it. I’ve got to compose myself and Sunday is when it gets real.”
Caroline Dubois, meanwhile, booked her quarter-final spot with a 3-0 points victory over America’s Rashida Ellis.
The Londoner, who is the younger sister of British heavyweight Daniel Dubois, will be guaranteed if she beats Thai fighter Sudaporn Seesondee on Tuesday.