O'Grady becomes state champ after hard-fought win

KOROIT boxer Jason O’Grady is this week celebrating the biggest win of his emerging career.

O’Grady, 24, is the newly crowned Victorian intermediate light heavyweight champion after scoring a points win in the state showcase.

He defeated Lucas Miller, for the second time in three fights, over three two-minute rounds at Parkville’s Reggio Calabria Club on Sunday.

The win took his 2013 record to 4-1. He lost to Miller at the start of the year but has since strung together four consecutive wins.

O’Grady, trained by Lyndon Edney at his Victoria Park gym, said he was rapt with the result, which came despite a stomach bug.

“We had a bit of a game plan going in — to stay off him in the first round, make him miss and counterpunch him. That worked pretty well,” he said.

“The second round was going to be pretty similar, but to pick up the pace, be a bit more aggressive about it. We did that and got on top again.

“The last round was going to be flat out, give it my all. I was a little bit crook. I had a stomach bug, that wasn’t real flash.

“The last round I got a little bit tired but stuck at it, toughed it out. I was always on top of him, which was good.”

O’Grady was an emerging footballer with Koroit before a knee injury while in the under 18s cut short his career.

He took up boxing as a way to keep fit during his rehabilitation.

O’Grady said the win would not have been possible without the guidance of Edney.

“It’s as much his state title as mine,” he said.

Edney was full of praise for his protege, whose pre-bout illness was cause for concern.

“But it made no difference because of the amount of heart Jason puts into his performance,” Edney said.

“He smothered the guy, outboxed him and outsmarted him the whole way.”

O’Grady’s success comes just three weeks after another Edney-coached prospect, Jyl Wright, won the intermediate youth 69kg division state title.

Both boxers will feature as part of an Australia Day boxing exhibition at Koroit Theatre.

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