Hammond qualifies for London Olympics

Moree’s Cameron Hammond takes on New Zealand’s Bowen Morgan.
Moree’s Cameron Hammond takes on New Zealand’s Bowen Morgan.

Cameron Hammond will be representing Australia at the London Olympic Games after defeating New Zealand representative Bowen Morgan in the Oceania Olympic Qualifier final on Sunday.

Hammond was a class above the rest as he tore through the competition one by one last week.

His opening fight against Tongan opponent Sosefo Falekaono was an easy win for Hammond, walking away 13-4 after three rounds.

“I was extremely nervous as I usually am before my first fight; knowing I had done all the training and preparation gave me confidence to come away with the win,” Hammond said.

After his first fight was out of the way he was taking on Samoan Henry Tyrell in the semi-finals.

Hammond cruised through all three rounds barely getting touched from his opponent winning 16-2.

“It gave me a lot of confidence going into the final after winning so convincingly in the semis,” he said.

After a “restless sleep” on Saturday night the Moree boxer was ready for the main event.

The first round against his New Zealand opponent was the toughest of the competition, according to Hammond.

“He came on really strong and aggressive which surprised me.

“I knew I was up after the first round but not by much.”

After a quick chat to coach Don Abnett, Hammond came out firing in the second round.

“He seemed a little bit off in the first round,” Abnett said.

“We knew he had to come back strong and in the final two rounds he was just too fast for his opponent; his speed and accuracy really showed. He was defiantly a class above the rest,” Abnett added.

Hammond flew back into Moree last night and is looking forward to some quality down time during the next week.

He will then be flying to China to fight in a tournament from April 4-14 with the Australian boxing team.

It’s then to Serbia from the 14th to the 28th where he will be fighting in Lithuania and Belarus.

Australian boxing coach Don Abnett said Hammond would be in training right up until the games which will be held from July 27 until August 12.

Weeks of analysing his opponents’ video footage will become second nature for the local boxer as fight plans come into play weeks leading up to the games.

“I don’t know how to describe the feeling. It has been very emotional,” Hammond said. “I’ve trained for six years leading up to this moment and now it’s finally here!”