THORNLANDS boxer Michael Black has taken his career to the next level, winning the south-east Queensland junior welterweight title in a fierce fight against James Torres on March 30.
As an amateur athlete, Black captured the attention of the world when he appeared on ESPN series Elite Boxing Championships.
Since then, the boxer - known in the ring as Mickey "Moneyshot" Black - has begun fighting professionally.
Saturday's match was his third professional bout but his first six-round title fight, and Black said coach Gareth Williams had prepared him well.
"We had a game plan set on how to start the fight and when to attack and then when to box," he said.
"A few plans changed up in the fight and we executed it very well.
"I was more aggressive throughout the fight and had a higher work rate and slick movements."
Black said the secret to his success in the match had been a positive mindset.
"For weeks before the fight I had a mindset of winning, picturing myself winning, picturing the belt around my waist (and telling myself) I need to win for myself to get bigger fights," he said.
"The mind can be so powerful, especially in a fight."
Black said he had a couple of tentative bouts lined up in the next couple of months, but would be focussing on perfecting his form and getting stronger.
He will be following in the footsteps of Williams, one of his biggest inspirations.
The Boxing Shop, Williams' gym in Salisbury, runs a program called Boxing Beyond Barriers, which uses the skills and attributes developed through boxing to help school children dealing with issues including bullying.
"It's given me another reason to fight and be a role model, showing kids with little to no confidence... kids that think they can't be who they want or chase their goals or dreams, showing them that they can," Black said.
"I want to prove to them it is possible and then give them the courage to be great in anything.
"Telling a young fighter he is doing well, has done a good job, can make a big impact on them."
Black now aspires to visit schools and hospitals, helping to spread the positive messages that he has learned through boxing.
"I love the fitness and confidence boxing can deliver," he said.
"It's a pathway to a successful life."
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.