Anthony Cocks goes toe-to-toe with rising cruiserweight Jason Whateley
Cruiserweight prospect Jason Whateley 7-0 (6) is being fast-tracked for success.
The undefeated 29-year-old Australian Olympian was matched against hard-hitting Navosa Ioata in his professional debut in September 2018, who he defeated on points, before stopping 38-fight veteran Victor Oganov nine months later.
Last December the 6-foot-5 Commonwealth Games silver medallist rolled over Daniel Russell for the Australian cruiserweight title, knocking him out in the opening round in a dominant performance.
Read on to learn what makes this heavy-handed country kid tick as we go 15 rounds with Jason Whateley.
Round 1: What attracted you to boxing in the first place?
Whateley: I’ve always had an interest in boxing as I had uncles that all boxed. I grew up in the country so finding somewhere to train was difficult. I got into quite a lot of fights as a young fella and played Aussie rules football as well. Every year the Bairnsdale boxing club ran an amateur boxing tournament where they would get two local footballers to fight off against each other to draw a good crowd. I was asked to take part and won by TKO. I fell in love with the sport and haven’t looked back.
Round 2: Toughest fight in the amateurs or pros?
Whateley: It is very hard to pick a specific fight. I had a lot of hard fights in the amateurs against great opposition. David Nyika was a very tricky fight that I had in the amateurs so my fights with him would be up there. As for the professionals, it would be Victor Oganov.
Round 3: Biggest puncher you’ve faced?
Whateley: I fought Lenier Pero of Cuba in 2013 who was a very powerful southpaw that was known for knocking a lot off opponents out at that time. He would be one that comes to mind, but I fought a lot of hard-hitters in my amateur career.
Round 4: What are the best and worst thing about being a boxer?
Whateley: Boxing has given me a lot and I am extremely grateful to have found the sport, it has taken me all over the world, places I would have never been to without it. It also has given me discipline. I have met some great people who I would not have met if not for the boxing. I owe this sport a lot.
A bad thing about the sport would be probably be unless you’re right at the top there isn’t a huge amount of money in it for the massive amount of work all boxers put into the sport. Either way I love the sport and love what I do.
Round 5: What is your most defining win of your career?
Whateley: My most defining and most memorable win would be my qualification fight for the 2016 Olympics in China against Tajikistan. It was my dream to represent Australia at the Olympics so to make that happen was something I’ll never forget.
Round 6: What are your goals for the next 12 months?
Whateley: My goals for the next 12 months would be to land some good fights and I’m also really gunning to get a shot at the Commonwealth title. I think that’s a very prestigious title to have, therefore I would love a crack at it.
Round 7: What are some your hobbies away from the ring?
Whateley: Most of the time after fights are done and I’m not in training I like to just catch up with friends and family as I can’t be very social in training camp. Other things I like to do are ride my Harley and also get out on my dirt bike. I also spend a lot of time with my two dogs Rocco, a Cane Corso, and Mack, a Rottweiler.
Round 8: Who is always ringside for your fights?
Whateley: My dad is always ringside for my fights and is definitely my biggest fan. He has been all over Australia and even overseas with me to show his support. I’m very blessed to have him as my father and number one supporter.
Round 9: Who has been biggest influence on your career?
Whateley: I think the biggest influence of my boxing career would be where I started my boxing at the Bairnsdale boxing club with trainer Neil ‘Stiffy’ Reynolds. They gave me the belief I could make something of myself as a boxer and assured me the sky was the limit with my boxing. My current coach Marcos Amado has always been very influential and great for my career. I had thought about giving boxing away until I began training with him and he relit the fire for me.
Round 10: What fight have you learnt the most from?
Whateley: I have learnt a lot from all of my fights as an amateur. I travelled all over the world fighting and sparring the world’s best boxers. As a professional I think I leant the most from my fight with Victor Oganov.
Round 11: What is something our readers would be surprised to learn about you?
Whateley: One would be that rides at theme parks scare me!
Round 12: Do you have any superstitions or rituals you follow in the lead-up to fight night?
Whateley: No, I don’t have any rituals or superstitions before I fight.
Round 13: What is your favourite post-fight feed?
Whateley: My favourite post fight feed. I like to grab a few mates and head to a pub that serves the biggest parma [chicken parmigiana] I can find and then a lot of ice cream afterwards.
Round 14: Why would we find you when you’re away from the gym?
Whateley: Places you would be most likely to find me away from the gym would probably be at home resting or taking the dogs somewhere for a run around.
Round 15: If you weren’t boxing, what would you be doing?
Whateley: If I wasn’t boxing I have absolutely no idea where I’d be or what I would be doing. I hate to think. If I had got my head screwed on I would have liked to join the army. Boxing has been great for me and I am extremely grateful it was introduced into my life.