Mike Tyson sparring partner ‘gave him a black eye’ after turning up in £20 training gear
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Glenn McCrory once turned up to be Mike Tyson's sparring partner in Atlantic City wearing £20 worth of training gear before giving him a black eye.
The Brit was lined up to help the heavyweight in 1987 as he prepared for a bout with Tyrell Biggs at Trump Plaza.
But the then British Commonwealth champion arrived in America before his luggage following a mix up on the flight.
He was loathed to turn down the opportunity to spar with Tyson, especially given the financial rewards involved.
McCrory concedes Tyson was bemused by his attire when he arrived, but admits to receiving a huge confidence boost when he gave Iron Mike a black eye which forced him to take several days off.
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“I had my head guard but no clothes,” McCrory told Tris Dixon on his Boxing Life Stories podcast.
“My dad had given me £20, so I thought I’d better go and get some kit as I couldn’t tell [Tyson] I can’t spar and I was getting $200 at the end of the week.
“So I went to the Army and Navy store and all I could get was a pair of white plimsolls, white shorts and a string vest.
“And that’s how I turned up to spar with the meanest man on the planet. He was speechless and I could tell he was thinking ‘what have they brought me.’
Mike Tyson is preparing for an exhibition bout at the age of 54
“The best publicity I got was a double page in the New York post,” he went on to say.
“My jab had given Tyson a black eye so he had to take a couple of days off.
“That got me noticed by [promoter] Cedric Kushner and sparring with Tyson gave me the confidence in my ability because I’d lost faith in myself.
“I thought ‘If I can do that with Tyson there’s not a cruiserweight in the world I can’t handle.”
McCrory went on to become the IBF cruiserweight world champion when he knocked out Patrick Lumumba, two years after sparring with Iron Mike.
Tyson himself is preparing for a return to the ring 15 years after retiring following his stoppage defeat by Kevin McBride.
He will take on Roy Jones at the age of 54 in an exhibition bout at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on November 28.