By Thad Mangalino
QLD—On 2 July 2017, the former primary school teacher and Brisbane local stunned the world and the thousands in attendance at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane. Jeff Horn, the former Olympian, defeated the 8-Division, and future hall of famer Senator Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao. The result of the fight has caused controversy and divided a lot of people within the boxing and non-boxing community.
The three judges awarded the Unanimous Decision of 115-113, 115-113 and 117-111. Speaking as a combat sport fan and disassociating myself as a Pacquiao fan, Manny lost the first three rounds and got his momentum in the middle rounds until a clash of heads opened a gash that would later require stitches. By the seventh round, Horn looked like he was running out of cardio and just continued to smother Pacquiao with clinches and strategically placed kidney punches and elbows. The referee did not once give Horn a warning or point deduction and by the end of the ninth round, the referee spoke to Horn’s corner. It looked to be over and stated that the fight might get stopped if Horn does not engage and fight. Towards the end, it looked like that it was going to be a draw but the decision was made and Michael Buffer announced Horn as the new champion.
The Battle of Brisbane also showcased other Filipino boxers, Super Lightweight and Manny Pacquiao’s cousin Jonel Dapidran who lost to Australian Brent Dames via Unanimous Decision. “Pretty Boy” Jerwin Ancajas from Panabo City, Davao Del Norte retained his IBF Super Flyweight title against Japan’s Teiru Kinoshita on the seventh round with a hard body shot. It was Australia’s biggest boxing event and the whole boxing world had all their eyes focused on Brisbane.
There are plenty of talks and speculations about what will happen next as there is a rematch clause in the contract and we might see Pacquiao vs. Horn II in November 2017. There are also talks about a Juan Manuel Marquez bout against Horn and even Tim Bradley as well as other top ranked welterweights. Words are also spreading about Pacquiao hanging up his gloves. With a disappointing result, all we need to do is sit and be patient we will have to see what will happen in the next few months.