THE dust has barely settled on Marong’s LVFNL season, but 2017 coach Damien Lock is wasting no time in turning attention to his other sporting passion.
Lock is less than two weeks away from his fifth professional boxing bout.
The 38-year-old, who has two wins and two losses in his career, will step into the ring on August 19 against Western Australian Sherwyn Watkins on a huge Punches in the Park promotion at the Melbourne Function Centre.
A seven-fight card is being promoted by Bendigo’s former Olympian and Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Lynden Hosking.
Lock, who has stepped down as Panthers coach after two seasons at the helm, has been preparing for the fight with daily gym workouts and says he’s ready to take the challenge up to the talented visitor.
“I’ve been getting down to Melbourne for plenty of sparring and working pretty hard, so hopefully I can get a good result on the night,” he said.
“It will be a good test – (Watkins) is a pretty handy boxer with four wins and two losses.
“He’s coming from Perth, so he’s not coming to lose.
“I’ve watched a bit of video of him and he looks like he goes really well.
The middleweight bout will be Lock’s fifth in just less than two years, after marking his debut with a win over Bradley Weaire in front of his home crowd at Bendigo Stadium in November 2015.
He followed up with a knockout loss to Queenslander Cameron Kaddour in June last year and a win over Joshua Butler in Melbourne in December.
In his last bout, Lock lost a unanimous points decision against Queenslander Blake ‘The Spider’ Travers in Melbourne in March, a contest he gave himself every chance of winning.
“It was a four-round fight; I thought I was a little unlucky,” he said.
“He’d had a lot of fights in the amateurs, about 100 or so. I thought I took it up to him, but didn’t get the decision on the night.
“That’s boxing, but I certainly took it up him and plan to get the win this time.”
Lock trains at the Whipstick Forest-based Tribe Boxing gym, under the guidance of Scott Tuddenham.
With no plans to be involved in football next season, Lock intends to take each fight as it comes and see where it leads.
“It was a very challenging year football-wise, we lost a lot of players from the year before and it was hard with the points system to replace the guys,” he said.
“To the boys’ credit they fought things out well and finished off with a couple of good wins.
“Hopefully the club will head in the right direction next season, get a good coach and go forward.”
The Panthers finished the season seventh with a 5-11 record.
Punches in the Park 5 is being co-headlined by a pair of WBA Oceania title bouts involving undefeated Melbourne twins Andrew (super flyweight) and Jason Moloney (super bantamweight).
Tickets can be purchased at: www.eventopia.co/event/PUNCHES-AT-THE-PARK-5/348140