1. Dec, 2016

John Hopoate wants a world ranking and will fight in America this year

Jan 8 2009

John Hopoate wants a world ranking and will fight in America this year
The Daily Telegraph January 08, 2009 12:00AM SHARE

John Hopoate
John Hopoate ... Former league bad boy has bigger fish to fry Sam Ruttyn Source: News Limited newspapers
RUGBY league star turned boxer John Hopoate is scheduled to fight three times in America this year, with the aim of securing a regional title bout and a world ranking.

Hopoate won the Australian heavyweight title last October with a ninth-round stoppage of veteran Bob Mirovic.

The former New South Wales and Australia winger has notched 10 wins - all by knockout - and just two losses since he switched to boxing in 2006.

Hopoate is now being managed by American-based Australian Stuart Duncan, who said the plan was for Hopoate to have three fights in the US this year and two in Australia.

Duncan said the 33-year-old heavyweight would work with Australian trainer Justin Fortune in the US, while retaining his current training team in Australia.

He believed better-quality sparring partners in the US would help add some polish to the undoubted power Hopoate possessed.

While the Australian National Boxing Federation has reportedly ordered Hopoate to give Mirovic a rematch, he could well end up relinquishing the title.

Duncan said Hopoate was likely to spend time in his altitude training camp in the US before making his American debut, possibly in March.

The Sydney-based boxer has fought under 40 rounds since moving over from rugby league.

Duncan has managed a number of well-credentialled Australian fighters, including Sam Soliman and Jason Delisle, and arranged important bouts for several others.