Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Horn Stops Corcoran In First Title Defense



Undefeated WBO Welterweight world champion Jeff Horn scored an impressive eleventh round stoppage of WBO number ten rated contender Gary Corcoran on Wednesday night at the Brisbane Exhibition and Convention Centre in Brisbane, Australia. In what was his first defense of the WBO crown that he won from future Hall of Famer Manny Pacquiao in July of this year, Horn dictated the combat from the outset working from distance and frequently throwing punches in combinations.

A highlight of Horn’s offense was his right hand that was frequently the focal point of the numerous combinations he threw. Despite being aggressive throughout the fight, Corcoran’s attempts to apply pressure on the champion were consistently offset by Horn’s lateral movement. Although the fight was competitive throughout, Horn’s crisper offense, ability to consistently get his punches off first, and deflect much of the challenger’s offense was the story of the fight.

The bout being lopsided in the champion’s favor however, did not prevent the fight from being entertaining. Horn suffered a cut over the left eye in round six, a cut that was actually originally suffered while he was in training for the bout, but ultimately opened cuts around both of the challenger’s eyes. The second cut, which was opened in round eight over Corcoran’s left eye gradually became worse as the fight progressed. By round eleven with his vision compromised, Corcoran could not see Horn’s punches coming and forced Referee Benjy Esteves to stop the fight. Official time of the stoppage was 1:35 of round eleven.

Jeff Horn advances to 18-0-1, with 12 Knockouts. Gary Corcoran falls to 17-2, with 9 Knockouts.

In previewing this fight, this observer stated that I felt Horn needed to make a statement in his first title defense following what many felt was a “Controversial“ decision in his victory over Manny Pacquiao. Although Pacquiao’s commitments as a senator in his native Philippines was the obstacle that has for now prevented a rematch between he and Horn from taking place, the new champion was impressive in his first defense of his world championship against a very “Game” opponent in Gary Corcoran.

While some might believe that the only way for the “Controversy” that emerged from the decision of the Pacquiao-Horn fight to be put to rest would be for a rematch between the two to occur, all a fighter can do is face the opposition that is put before them and Horn proved in this fight against Gary Corcoran that he is a fighter that can take what some might view as a distraction of potential fights falling through and do what he can do to not only combat the opposition that he did have to contend with in the ring, but by doing so in impressive fashion, was able to maintain his position atop a talent deep Welterweight division as well as open some interesting possibilities for future fights.

One such possibility appears to be Horn’s next opponent in the form of undefeated former multi-division world champion Terence Crawford. Crawford, who recently became the Undisputed Jr. Welterweight world champion with a knockout win over Julius Indongo in a unification bout opted to relinquish the championship and set his sights on attempting to win a world championship in a fourth weight class after also holding world championships in the Jr. Lightweight and Lightweight divisions in his career by stepping up into the 147lb. Welterweight division. The World Boxing Organization (WBO) has designated Crawford as its number one Welterweight contender.

The question is simply not if Horn defend his crown against Crawford, but when will the fight take place. Two things are clear,  Jeff Horn is a star that is continuing to rise that could well be fighting here in the United States when he does face Crawford and when that fight is signed, it will surely be one of the most anticipated fights of 2018.

“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”

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