North Albury will unveil one of the region’s most versatile sportsmen.
Tom Sharp was a member of the Bandits’ championship-winning basketball squad, had three amateur boxing bouts, contested three jiu-jitsu competitions and was training for an MMA (mixed martial arts fight).
“I like the aspects of individual sports,” he said.
“You can’t fake that (competing in one-on-one contests) when someone is trying to knock you out or someone’s trying to choke you unconscious, you’re never more alert.”
The 24-year-old returned to football from basketball after starting in Wodonga Raiders’ juniors.
He then had two wins and a loss in the light heavyweight (80kg) amateur boxing division.
When someone is trying to knock you out or someone’s trying to choke you unconscious, you’re never more alert.Tom Sharp
“You’re always nervous, the worst part is the weeks leading up or the day before, but once it starts you don’t think about anything else,” he said.
“You might get a little bit of an adrenaline rush, but there’s no nerves no more.”
Interestingly, Sharp says the fear associated with boxing isn’t physical, it’s mental.
“It’s not even the result of getting knocked out that’s embarrassing, it’s what everyone thinks, that’s scary," he said.
“It’s the fear of getting knocked down in front of family and friends.”
He then did two years of jiu-jitsu.
“It will definitely help with the tackling because it’s all grappling,” he said.
Sharp’s last physical venture will cost him a start in North’s senior side.
“I was sparring for an MMA fight, which never eventuated, I went to block a kick and got kicked in the arm, which broke it,” he said.
At 188cms, Sharp is likely to play centre half-back.
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