It’s certainly being billed as one of Australia’s premium bouts! And rightly so; in one corner is Jeff Horn who has proven himself in the ring with the championship battle against Manny Pacquiao for the title of WBO Welterweight champion, and also against Anthony Mundine.
In the other corner though, is Tim Tszyu. Tszyu is a Light Middleweight champion and son of another great Aussie champion, Kostya Tszyu. Tim is indeed a fine young boxer on the rise in his sport, reaching for the Welterweight title and determined to be equally as successful as his father.
One is from Queensland (Horn) and the other from Sydney (Tszyu).
As Horn captured the hearts of all Australians when he defeated Pacquiao for the WBO title in 2017, and Tszyu is capturing them now, it will be a difficult split for Aussies. It will however be an easy marketing exercise for the sport!
Billed as the State of Origin for Boxing, Queensland vs New South Wales, its bound to get that old chestnut fired up again!
“Well it is! It is a State of Origin for boxing”, says Horn in interview
“There’s four State of Origins this year and hopefully Queensland get’s it on the border town”, he continues.
Promoter Dean Lonergan was a little more direct;
“The fight will be done close to NRL’s State of Origin time, so it has that Queensland vs NSW feel and I promise you this .. the Queensland media would LOVE to see `The Blue’ get knocked on it’s bum!”
He’s referring to a phrase coined for Tszyu as “Tszyu the Blue!”
But of course it is a serious fight and Tszyu’s focus is on the profession rather than the entertainment value.
“I’m here to bring big fights”, says Tszyu, “I’m not here to be the clown and to entertain. I need to fight and I think Australia needs that and I think Australians respect that!”
The bout was initially scheduled for 22nd April however had to be shifted due to COVID-19 lockdowns, and has been moved to Wednesday, August 26.
There is still some uncertainty around the state of the border separating Queensland and NSW , so Tszyu’s team have relocated him to the Gold Coast where he has been since on July 27 to complete his training.