BEAUDESERT Boxing Club’s Kalob Gray is back home after the opportunity of a lifetime, fighting European champions on their own soil.
Gray represented Beaudesert on the Australian team, winning all three of his fights in Germany last month.
He said he had relished the challenge of tournaments away from home.
The first fight was against the Netherlands champion Farshid Bos on September 19, two days after arriving in Wesel, Germany.
“I smashed him easily and then I fought the German champion, Emil Schneider,” Gray said.
“He was a fighter with heart, he kept walking into bombs.
“He didn’t give up easily so it was a good fight but I beat him by unanimous decision.”
The Beauy bruiser’s third and final bout involved facing off with German opponent Felix Zemke.
“He really boxed, he didn’t walk forward.”
Victory in the ring against Zemke meant Gray could return home unbeaten and unscathed.
He said his experience in Wesel was very different to training and fighting in Beaudesert.
“It was very green over there but there were a lot of poor people in the street,” he said.
“You don’t really see that in Beaudesert.”
Gray said he did not make friends with the European fighters but cemented his connection with his Australian team members.
‘In between fights I spent a lot of time riding bikes with Tyler Harrington from Pine Rivers and it was awesome to hang out with him,” he said.
“It was relaxing, there were no arguments or car fights over there and the food was awesome too.”
Beaudesert Boxing Club coach Justin O’Leary said the all-Queenslander team was picked by Boxing Australia and Boxing Queensland, with a view to preparing some to take part in the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
“The way the rules are now, Kalob will not qualify for Tokyo because he will only be 18 and you have to be 19 to qualify in boxing for the Olympics or Commonwealth Games,” he said.
“But the experience will have done him the world of good.”
Gray said it was his first time getting into the ring after such a long journey, with the furthest he had ever traveled before was to Perth.
“The flight was long and boring but we had free movies, food and drink the entire way,”
Mr O’Leary said the trip was good for Kalob’s development in the sport.
‘His next goal will be to fight in Ireland or England,” he said.
“We will talk about it as we go but that is the plan right now.”