Definition of punch above one's weight in English:

punch above one's weight


  • Engage in an activity or contest perceived as being beyond one's abilities.

    ‘there is something about the British that makes them punch above their weight in a number of entertainment industries’
    • ‘Barely a handful of his films have even turned a profit, but the 42-year-old smoothie still punches above his weight in cinema, politics and public affairs.’
    • ‘Although, like the Irish, we've always punched above our weight in the ranks of global pop culture, we've tended to be ambivalent about the results.’
    • ‘Burley has said Ipswich can become the next Leicester, a modestly-sized but shrewdly - run club consistently punching above their weight.’
    • ‘An ally of the French, Germany is against giving ground on voting rights which could allow smaller nations to punch above their weight on key decisions.’
    • ‘The feeling is that universities are already punching above their weight in terms of research and number of spin-out companies per research grant.’
    • ‘If the Scottish underdogs are to punch above their weight against a bigger, and better equipped, play-off opponent, they will have to do better than they did against England four years ago.’
    • ‘Christie's realism got him into trouble with some supporters whose expectations have grown quicker than the club when he insisted that last season Inverness had again been punching above their weight.’
    • ‘We might be able to give UK small businesses a huge opportunity in Europe for punching above their weight.’
    • ‘We were well below that 5.4 million figure last season and we are still down in 18th or 19th place and that clearly shows how we have massively punched above our weight with thin resources.’
    • ‘However, Straka denies suggestions that his team are punching above their weight in Europe, arguing instead that their current domestic standing does not do them justice.’