WEE COUNTY boxer Thomas (Tommy) Sinclair was born in Tillicoultry on March 27, 1908 – the third of four sons born to Thomas Sinclair, a mechanical engineer, and his wife Christina Aitkin.

His mother died when he was 14 and around then he and his younger brother Duncan became increasingly interested in boxing.

Tommy trained to become a welter-weight fighter. Following many amateur bouts, his professional career took off during the 1930s.

On January 22, 1931, at the Scottish Stadium in Govan, Glasgow, Sinclair fought Tommy Kemp from Aberdeen in his debut professional match. It was also his first professional win.

He went on to meet Johnny Seely at one of Glasgow’s newest venues, The Ring at Vinegar Hill, which he lost, then Jim McQuade, again in Glasgow, which ended up a draw.

In May 1932 Sinclair fought, and defeated, Stan Bland at Alloa Football Ground. It was at this time he decided to base himself in Bournemouth for a season where, in all 14 fights, he never had an adverse decision.

On March 31, 1933, he fought Billy Wiper at the Connaught Drill Hall in Portsmouth in his last English match. It was a draw.

Following his return from England, he faced one of Scotland’s best welter-weights of the era, Jake Kilrane, who was six years his junior.

According to The People’s Journal, he was ‘very fit and should prove a hot handful’ for Kilrane but in the end Kilrane won the match.

He fought and beat Willie Milligan from Banknock and drew with Ted Malloy. He also fought Frank Erne on October 19, 1933, at The Ring in Glasgow, but had to retire, handing the win to his opponent.

During his whole career, he was never knocked out during a match, although did sustain injuries especially to his hands and ears. He also amassed a fine collection of trophies during his career.

Sinclair gave up boxing, and worked various jobs including at Tillicoultry Quarry then at a local papermill as a colour mixer.

During World War II, Sinclair and a few colleagues from the quarry came across what they assumed were German soldiers and marched them down the hill to hand them over to the authorities.

As it transpired the men were actually Polish and part of a contingent of Polish soldiers who were stationed at Middleton and Oak mills in Tillicoultry.

One of the 'prisoners' Charles Zywiolek became a lifelong friend.

Tommy Sinclair died on February 25, 1991, aged 81.