Ballarat boxing prodigy Jack Denahy was honoured at the Sports Hall of Fame Australia last week by becoming part of its 2020 mentoring program.
The current Australian champion was one of five promising athletes to receive a scholarship at a special gala dinner at The Crown Palladium on Thursday.
Denahy rubbed shoulders with Australian sporting greats, and witnessed Ash Barty win the prestigious Don Award. He also saw Louise Savage make sporting history by becoming the first para Olympian to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
He said the chance to meet so many sporting heroes was a once in a lifetime opportunity.
"It was such an awesome experience being able to talk to, and receive advice from sporting legends such as John Bertrand, Ken Rosewall, Ian Healey and Russell Mark to name a few," Denahy told The Courier.
"Having access to those that have been at the top of their game is an opportunity that I am extremely grateful."
The scholarship grants Denahy one-on-one personal mentoring from hall of fame member Fitz-Gerald and a $5,000 allowance for sporting expenses.
Denahy claimed his second elite men's national 57-kilogram boxing championship in June, and recently competed at the 2019 AIBA world boxing championships in Russia.
He will next compete to retain his Australian title in Melbourne in early December, before attempting Olympic selection.
He hoped to represent Australia at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.