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Weighty issue for Lavelle

Stephen Lavelle, the Commonwealth Games gold medallist, is facing a dilemma on whether he should stay amateur or turn professional, writes Adam Henderson.

While the 24-year old heavyweight plans to bide his time and make sure he makes the right choice, he has already made one important decision. Lavelle will no longer campaign at heavyweight, whether in the pros or amateurs, and plans to drop from 91 to 81 kilograms.

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He said: "I've always boxed at heavyweight but I was never a 91 kilo boxer. I'm too small for the weight so I need to drop down. The fact I won a bronze medal at the Games against big strong guys gives me confidence of how well I can do at a lower weight.

"I've sparred with Scott Forrest [Scotland's light-heavyweight representative] and I believe if I drop down to that division and stay amateur I would have a good chance of beating him. Although it would obviously be up to the selectors to decide who would be in the team."

Lavelle will meet sportscotland representatives today to discuss funding but the Gorbals boxer says it would take a big incentive to stop him turning pro. He said: "There's a good chance I'll be turning pro but I don't want to rush into anything. A few doors have opened up and as a medallist I've got a platform."

"But the way my life has been over the past few years I've had to put everything on the back burner for boxing and I had to quit my job for the Games. I can't really live like that as I need to be making an income.

"I'll see what SportScotland have to say. If they offered to pay all my wages for when I was boxing with Scotland or gave me a set amount a year I'd consider staying amateur but I don't think they're likely to do that. I'd also like to know what their plans are for the senior boxing team.

"I'm going to go in and see Alex Morrison and see what he's offering me. If I do turn pro it's likely to be with him as my teammates Joe and Stewart are both with him. Turning pro, I'm not just some guy, I'm a Commonwealth Games Bronze Medallist so I do think it's a good opportunity."

"Since the Games I've had a lot of interest from media and the local community and I've being going out to talk to people about the Games. It's been great to get the support of everyone."

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