Boxers duel in California Gully

THE Kangaroo Flat-based Pianto Boxing Academy is strongly represented at Saturday night's boxing tournament in California Gully.

Highlights of the night will include the Piper brothers, Andrew and Shane competing in the light-heavyweight (81kg) bouts.

Both are trained by Frank Pianto, promoter of Saturday's tournament at Truscott Reserve, home of the Eaglehawk Soccer Club in Murdock Street.

Shane Piper will be chasing a hat-trick of wins.

His previous wins were at Doncaster on points and at Corowa in a first-round knockout.

Andrew Piper is lining up for his second bout.

"Shane and Andrew have worked extremely hard in training," Pianto said of their daily sessions at the gym in Calder Freeway.

"They have a lot of strength, move well, and their workrate is fantastic."

The Pipers are being trained by Pianto and Jared Kum Too, a multiple national championship winner.

Kum Too was the Cyril Michelsen Trust Fund recipient in the Bendigo Advertiser Sports Star of the Year award in 2004-05.

Now in its 50th year, Sports Star is proudly supported by WIN Television and Bendigo Bank.

Injury has meant he can no longer compete, but Kum Too was keen to stay in the sport .

The Pianto Boxing Academy also has Castlemaine's Jason Chislett in 54kg; and Vaughan and Connor Stamm in the 44kg class on Saturday night's card near Eaglehawk.

There will be plenty of interest surrounding the fortunes of gun footballer Damien Lock.

The former Carlton player will fight in the light-heavyweight division (81kg).

Lock is trained by Scott Tuddenham.

The star midfielder played 18 matches for Carlton Football Club between 1997 and '99.

He was drafted to the Blues via the Bendigo Pioneers and Eaglehawk.

Lock played a key role in Eaglehawk's grand final victory in 2008. He earned the Nalder Medal for best afield.

His footy career includes coaching stints at Colbinabbin and North Bendigo.

Lock has returned to play for Eaglehawk this season.

Pianto said Saturday night's tournament is the third he will promote in Bendigo this year.

"There are several boxers from across Melbourne or other country towns heading to Bendigo for this fight night.

"The goal is to host another tournament in September and then the Victorian championships later in the year," Pianto said.

Tickets for Saturday's event are $20 and available at the door to the Murdock Street stadium off Eaglehawk Road.  

Doors open at 6pm.

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