Aussie boxer Jeff Horn has announced that he will fight WBO welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao on April 23 in potentially the largest boxing match to ever take place in Australia.
The 28-year-old Queenslander confirmed in a press conference on Wednesday that the fight will go ahead after successful talks between his camp and Pacquiao’s promoter Bob Arum in Las Vegas overnight.
The fight currently has no confirmed venue, but Horn has made it clear the he wants the fight “The Pacman” in front of his hometown crowd at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.
However the huge match may also take place in another stadium in Australia, the United States or the Middle East, with Horn’s leading backer Dean Lonergan saying that the bout will take place in the location that made “the most commercial sense” for both parties.
Pacquiao last fought in November, winning the WBO welterweight title for the third time after defeating Jessie Vargas by points decision.
This was the 38-year-old’s first fight back following a short retirement to focus on his political career in the Philippines, where he currently serves as a senator.
In 2015, prior to his short time away from the ring, Pacquiao was defeated by megastar boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. in a bout worth $600 million, the most money generated from a boxing fight ever.
Despite the Aussie currently being undefeated in the ring after 17 fights, he will enter the lucrative match a heavy underdog to Pacquiao, who has won 59 of his 67 total career fights.
Horn however says that he is facing Pacquiao at the perfect time.
“I think I’ve got the skills to win,” he said.
“It’s my time. I’m getting Pacquiao at the right moment.
“I know I have the power to hurt him. If I land a clean shot on Pacquiao when he’s coming forward I know I could hurt him. That’s what I’m hoping for - to catch him as he rushes in.”