Australia looks set to host Manny Pacquiao - Jeff Horn fight
What’s the story?
After weeks of speculation, Queensland State could indeed host the fight between WBO welterweight world champion Manny Pacquiao and Australian Jeff Horn. According to a report in the Times of India (TOI), officials have confirmed that negotiations were being held to host the bout.
Speaking to reporters Queensland’s tourism minister Kate Jones said, "We now are getting the pieces together to deliver this major fight. We are working very closely with Duco Events, (venue manager) AEG Ogden and as well as the (Brisbane City) Council to secure this fight here in Brisbane. We're hoping to lock this down as soon as possible."
Alan Graham, Suncorp Stadium general manager also revealed that Horn was eager to fight at the 52,000-capacity stadium. He told reporters, “He's personally said that he couldn't think of anything more exhilarating than walking out in the middle of Suncorp Stadium with a full house and people backing him... for a fight.”
In case you didn’t know…
Pacquiao is a veteran of 67 fights in which he has notched up 59 wins. Now he has somewhat parlayed his sporting fame into a career in politics. Horn, on the other hand, is relatively much less experienced. He has only 17 fights under his belt in which he has won 16.
The heart of the matter
Speculations have been rife that a fight between the 38-year-old Filipino boxer and the Australian would take place in April, possibly in Australia. Only last week, Pacquiao had said that the date and the opponent of his next fight were still to be decided and that the talks were ongoing.
However, Jones described the bout as the "largest boxing event in Australia" and also revealed that her government was keen to secure the fight at the 52,500-capacity Suncorp Stadium.
Reports have suggested that the fight will take place on 23 April, 2017.
Pacquiao will look to defend his WBO title and lineal welterweight title when he takes on Horn in April. He is currently in his third reign as WBO welterweight champion and has held both titles since 2016.
Considered as one of the best boxers of all time, Pacquiao is at the fag end of his career. Having won eleven major world titles, he certainly has the experience to overcome his rival. Horn, on his part, will try his best to win the title and will put up his best fight. Australia is a great venue for the fight and Horn will have all the home support.