The past 18 months have been a roller-coaster ride for Australian fighter Jeff Horn, having admirably risen up the professional boxing ladder to realize his dream of becoming world champion before swiftly losing his grasp on that title on a trip to the United States.
‘The Hornet’ had long been making a name for himself in his homeland, with the Brisbane, Queensland, native impressively rising to prominence down under to gallantly earn a shot at world title honors.
Horn, a 2012 Olympian for his country, brilliantly outworked and ultimately stopped South African opponent Ali Fuenka back in December 2016 and what followed was a life-changing fight. In light of that victory at the Vector Arena in Auckland, the now-30-year-old then saw himself collide with the legendary Filipino Manny Pacquiao, a match-up which was going to alter his career and see him achieve a dream sporting feat.
He entered the clash with ‘Pacman’ as a huge underdog, and rightfully so against boxing’s first and only ever eight-division world champion, but that wasn’t going to hurt his aspirations in the ring that night at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.
After 12 brutal rounds against the ageing Pacquiao, Horn aggressively outfought his experienced opponent to earn a controversial unanimous decision triumph in front of a highly partisan crowd at the massive outdoor venue.
The former world champion will need to produce another solid display when he takes to the ring in his next upcoming encounter, as he tackles fellow Australian Anthony Mundine.
Horn will take to the ring as the best-priced odds-on 1/6 favourite according to Oddschecker to get the better of his compatriot in their November 30th battle. He’s widely expected to prevail and have his hand raised this time around, following a destructive loss to one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the sport today, Terence Crawford.
Following the most illustrious victory of Horn’s career over Pacquiao, he went on to make a strong, successful opening defence of his former title against British challenger Gary Corcoran on home territory.
The traveling London native arrived down under from the English capital full of hopes and expectations, having seen the bout as his best ever opportunity to become a world champion himself. Many regarded Horn as a less threatening champion compared to the other dominant forces in the division, but Corcoran learned quickly that he was no pushover and was never going to let that belt leave his grasp easily in front of his passionate home supporters.
In that maiden defence, Horn rallied to a second successive strong performance, breaking down the Briton gradually over the rounds and eventually getting to him to earn a knockout triumph in the 11th round of proceedings.
Not being the type of fighter to shy away from a challenge, Horn showed tremendous heart and bravery to then step up and collide with Crawford, who is widely considered by many organizations, fans, and pundits as the best boxer currently on the planet.
That didn’t deter the brave man from Brisbane, as he dauntingly traveled to the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada during this past June of this year to defend his crown once again. This was the first time Horn had fought outside of his homeland and it proved to be a brave but unsuccessful ring outing on his debut in the United States of America.
He faced a fighter who was simply a calibre above and ultimately lost his crown. But he is next aiming to bounce back with a much better performance against Mundine, as he looks to get back on track in his career.