Australian amateur sensation Damien “Super” Hooper has confirmed he's turning professional after a stellar amateur career. Hooper has inked a management agreement with Matt Clark, Brendan Bourke and Philippe Fondu. “I’m delighted to be turning pro” stated Hooper, “I can’t wait to get into the ring and I couldn't be more happy with my new management team and my trainer Gareth Williams". When asked was the decision to turn pro a difficult one, Hooper replied: “Not at all. I gave the amateurs a good run and now it’s time to turn pro and shake up the Light Heavyweight division.”
Hooper executed a near perfect 2010 taking out the Oceania Championship before winning Gold at the Youth Olympics in Singapore followed by Silver in the Youth World Championships in Baku. He continued his fantastic form into 2011, earning a spot at the 2012 London Olympic Games and an AIBA world ranking of number two in the world. At the London Olympics, Hooper defeated the highly touted American Marcus Browne 13-11, after causing controversy by wearing a shirt bearing the Aboriginal flag into the ring. It was viewed by some as a political statement, when the Olympics are considered apolitical. When questioned afterwards Hooper stated "I'm representing my culture, not only my country but all my people as well". Hooper bowed out of the competition when he lost to the eventual Olympic Light Heavyweight Champion, Egor Mekhontsev.
"Some people might find it interesting that there are in effect three managers for Damien, however we get on very well and we all bring something different to the table. Our clients get a wide range of professionalism from a broad background of experience,” Bourke said. "Damien is a very special talent and we believe he has the ability to become a World champion".
"I'm excited to be working with someone with as much potential as Damien," Clark said. "I know that under the tutelage of Gareth Williams he'll go as far as possible in the sport. He's excited about turning pro and Aussie fight fans are going to love watching him grow as a boxer". Fondu, a veteran of the sport who has acted as chief matchmaker for a number of high profile promotional companies believes Hooper has all the ingredients to become champion. "Damien's natural ability is obvious. He has brilliant hand-speed and brutal punching power. I believe he can become Australia's third ever Light Heavyweight world champion, after Jeff Harding and Danny Green".
Hooper's management team will begin looking for a suitable promoter to further advance his career. In the mean time, Hooper will look to relocate from Toowoomba to Brisbane and begin the arduous task of returning to peak fitness. "I can't wait to get in there and start putting people to sleep," he said. I hope all Australian fight fans can get behind me and I'm going to give it everything I've got".