By NICK GIONGCODespite an announcement made by no less than Manny Pacquiao, the camp of undefeated Australian puncher Jeff Horn yesterday expressed hope that their world welterweight title fight will end up being staged in Brisbane.
Pacquiao came out on social media and even on local television, saying that his return to the ring on April 23 will be held either in Dubai or Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates.
But Horn is pinning his hopes on Top Rank chief Bob Arum, who has promotional rights over Pacquiao.
Several weeks ago, Arum met with Horn’s promoters in Las Vegas and a couple of weeks back, Dean Lonergan of the New Zealand-based Duco Promotions revealed that the state government of Queensland is willing to join hands.
Michael Koncz, Pacquiao’s Canadian adviser, even went to Abu Dhabi over the weekend and held a press conference there, announcing that the 38-year-old boxing star is coming over to fight.
“Michael Koncz has looked at other options, and he is well within his rights to do so,” Lonergan told the Courier Mail, the main newspaper of Brisbane.
“But Bob Arum is Pacquiao’s exclusive promoter and he will still make the final call in consultation with Manny.”
Horn, speaking to the Herald Sun (Melbourne), doesn’t hide the fact that he would rather rumble with Pacquiao at home with the 52,500-seat Suncor Stadium playing host to the match.
“Let’s wait until Bob Arum speaks,” said Glenn Rushton, who manages and trains Horn.
Still, Horn insists that the venue isn’t a major concern provided that he gets the chance to meet Pacquiao.
“I’ll fight him on the moon if I have to,” Horn told the Herald Sun. “It doesn’t bother me but it would be beyond a dream come true if I do get it in Brisbane or Australia.”