BENNY LYNCH was generally considered one of the finest ringmen below lightweight in the pre-World War II era and is generally regarded as the greatest fighter ever to come out of Scotland. The 5'5'' Lynch was born in Clydesdale, Scotland, and turned pro in 1931 at age 18. He did most of his early campaigning in traveling booths (carnivals). It was on this circuit that he developed his excellent boxing skills. Lynch also possessed awesome punching power, which is seldom found in flyweights.
"Our Benny" was a man of the people and developed into one of the biggest attractions in the history of the division. On May 16, 1934 he won the Scottish flyweight title with a 15-round decision over Jim Campbell in Glasgow. A rematch with Campbell a month later ended in the same manner. In fact, he went 20-0-1 in 1934 and into ’35. In March 1935, he drew with British and European flyweight king Jackie Brown, which set up a showdown with Brown six months later with the title on the line. Brown also was recognized in Europe as the world champion.
The bout took place Sept. 8, 1935 in Manchester, England. It was a major road trip for Scottish boxing fans. And they weren't disappointed as Lynch scored six knockdowns en route to a second-round stoppage. He had seven non-title fights in 1936, winning all but one. Their was dispute, at least on one side of the Atlantic, about who was the best flyweight in the world. But Lynched settled that when he out-pointed Filipino Small Montana in London for universal recognition.
From 1932-36, he lost just two fights. Both of them were points losses to Jim Warnock, in 1936 and again in ‘37. Lynch won a Lonsdale belt outright by stopping Pat Palmer in eight rounds and Peter Kane in 13. The Kane fight was particularly grueling. Kane, who would dominate the division after Lynch, gave the champ all he could handle. By this time Lynch was also beginning to lose a battle on the scales.
By 1938, he could no longer make the weight. He drew with Kane in a non-title bout in March. Two months later for a flyweight title defense with American Jackie Jurich, Lynch weighed in at 118.5, a half a pound over the bantamweight limit. Although the fight took place, Lynch was stripped of the title. He stopped the American in the 12th round. But it was a bittersweet moment. His problems persisted. He lost a 12-round decision to Kayo Morgan on Sept. 28, and a week later was knocked out for the only time in his career by Aurel Toma in Round 3. It was, at age 25, his last fight.
Lynch’s had health problems the rest of his life. He died of malnutrition in 1946 at age 33.