Damien Hooper is fast becoming an Australian with a big future ahead.
Not only in the boxing ring but over the past 18 months he is becoming a role model to kids as someone who has made major changes in his life to become a better man and a better fighter.
There was lots of hype regarding your last fight. Did it affect your preparation?
DH: no it never affected my preparation. My coach had specifically told me not to worry about it and just execute my plan and I did. I knew how the fight would turn out as Casey obviously didnt respect me and all the great fighters that Ive shared the ring with.I knew I had a lot more ability than him.
The public have seen a few of you as a pro and this was definately your best performance,would you agree?
DH: I think it was defiantly a good performance.I was happy with the way I broke him down and finished him to the Body, thats exactly the way we wanted it to happen.Theres still alot more skills to show yet, That was still only a 7 out of 10 performance
Who would you like to fight in the future?
DH: I just want to fight the best and be the best. When my Team think Im ready, I will beat anyone.
What is your big goal in professional boxing?
DH: I want to be the worlds best fighter – Pound for pound ,not just win 1 title but to keep winning and teaching all the little kids out there that , no matter what your start in life is like, you can still do anything you set your mind to.
The Commonwealth games team were very successful this year, what has been the turnaround in Australian amateur boxing over the last 6 years or so?
DH: The Aussie Games team did exceptionally well, i think timing is perfect for the boxers now. They had been waiting along time to get there shots and they did really well.
Don Abnett has been a driving force behind all the team over the last 4-6 years. I know I wouldn’t be where I am now without him
Which other Aussies should we look out for in the future?
DH: Theres a young fella named Jack Bowen..watch this kid go over the next few years.
People say he boxes similar to my style and thats good because I try and help him out where I can. He is still young and learning and he loves to learn.
Cam Hammond has got all the skills in the world and he can hit hard. He will make it to the top when he starts realising how good he can be.
You had a great win at the Olympics against Marcus Browne,would you like to fight him as a pro?
DH: Id love to fight Marcus again,we had a great fight at the Olympics and I would beat him again as a pro..
Hopefully in front of his home crowd in Vegas lol
Any last words?
DH: I just want all the kids and young people out there to Dream and Believe it can happen if you put your mind to it.