Lucas Browne made every Australian boxing fan a happy fan when he stopped Ruslan Chagaev recently in Grozny, but for one man, his manager Matt Clark who watched on from the corner, it was so much more then that.
Speaking with Boxing News and Views, Matt said:
“Incredible, absolutely incredible. Nobody gave Lucas much of a chance and I think this is exactly what Australian boxing needs. Of late it’s been drowning over seas, but it’s not just the victory, it’s the manner of the victory. He copped a flogging and showed all the ticker in the world in that 6th round which was 1516 seconds long, start getting himself back back into in the 7th a bit and the round ended 40 seconds short.”
“Look, he was well behind on the cards but one thing with Lucas is he has that equalizer, you can say what you want about him, but he has world class power. Chagaev has been down once in his career against Klitschko and Lucas stopped him. It’s an incredible victory.”
Although Lucas was behind on the cards, he did show a marked improvement on previous performances, using his footwork well and working behind the jab. New trainer Rodney Williams already started paying off in a short space of time.
Browne added further:
“I’ve got a bit of credit over the passed few days but the credit has to go to Lucas Browne and Rodney Williams. When Lucas first started working with Rodney I saw stuff on social media, people saying Lucas should stay were he is or train with this guy or that guy. But the proof is in the pudding. Everything has improved – his fitness, footwork and just his all round boxing ability. I’ve watched it back a few times. Yes Chagaev was landing but Lucas was boxing behind his jab well, not loading up on shots, disguising his shots and boxing smart. People have never seen that from him, and that credit has to go to Rodney Williams and Lucas Browne for being a fast learner.”
But it wasn’t just a hostile environment inside the ring, Browne and his team had 24 hour armed protection for the duration of their stay in Grozy it turns out:
“I’ve been a police officer for 9 years and I saw more guns in Grozny in a week then I have in the police force. All joking aside, you can only presume the protection is needed if it’s been given, but we found the people great and we were really looked after.”
Next up for Lucas will be his mandatory Fres Oquendo, who is at the tail end of a shoulder injury Clark concluded:
“We signed a contract and we intend to honour it. I’m friendly with Oquendo’s manager and we’ve been in contact. Rumours that we have been in talks to face anyone else are exactly that – rumours.”
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