Jai Opetaia vs Jordan Thompson Preview September 30th, 2023
Unbeaten IBF Cruiserweight Champion Jai Opetaia of Australia defends his belt for the first time when he takes on England’s Jordon Thompson in London this Saturday September 30th. Opetaia won the title via a unanimous decision over Mairis Briedis in a slugfest in July 2022 while the undefeated Thompson last fought in April when he stopped Luke Watkins in the sixth round to defend his IBF European Cruiserweight Crown. Saturday’s fight can be seen live in most nations on DAZN.
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Opetaia vs Thompson Betting Odds
- Jordan Thompson +350
- Jai Opetaia -500
The 27-year-old southpaw Opetaia climbs through the ropes with a perfect mark of 22-0 with 17 Ko’s and obviously carries quite a bit of power in his punches with a current knockout ratio of 77.3 per cent. However other than Briedis, he’s fought limited opposition up to now as his biggest wins were over the likes of Daniel Ammann, Frankie Lopez, Kurtis Pegoraro, Mark Flanagan and Benjamin Kelleher.
Opetaia is a good-sized cruiserweight as he stands 6-feet-2-inches tall with a 76-inch reach. He’s boxed 97 rounds since making his pro debut in 2015 following a pretty successful amateur career. Opetaia represented his homeland at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England as a heavyweight but was edged in his first bout.
He was an Australian National Champion in 2012, 2013 and 2014 and won a gold medal at the 2011 World Junior Championships. He won gold at the 2012 Oceanian Olympic Qualifier as well as bronze at the 2012 World Youth Championships and boxed at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland. Since turning pro he’s won the vacant Australia-New South Wales State Heavyweight Title along with the vacant OPBF, Australian, WBO Global, WBO Asia Pacific, WBA Oceania, IBF Pan Pacific, IBF Asia Oceania, and IBF Youth Cruiserweight Belts.
As for Thompson, the IBF European Champion hails from Manchester and makes the ring walk with a perfect record of 15-0 with 12 Ko’s so just edges Opetaia in the power department as his current knockout ratio clocks in at 80 per cent. He’s got great size for the division as he measures 6-feet-6-inches tall, which gives him a three-inch height advantage on Opetaia, but unfortunately has an unlisted reach.
He made his pro debut in 2015 and has boxed just 41 rounds since due to his power. Thompson captured the vacant IBF European Title in August, 2022 when he got up from the canvas in the 10th round to beat Vasal Ducar via unanimous decision. Like, Opertia, he hasn’t really been tested by the world’s top cruiserweights as he’s defeated boxers such as Shane Dragonslayer, Mariano angel Gudino and Piotr Podlucki. In fact, nine of his 15 opponents entered the ring with a losing record.
Opetaia suffered a jaw injury in his fight against Briedis and has been out of action for over a year so may have some ring rust to deal with. He showed a sturdy chin in that fight and is now out to prove that it wasn’t just a one-off performance. He’ll have to deal with Thompson’s height advantage and power this time around. Both boxers have basically been fighting domestic-level opponents up to now and this is a pretty even matchup. It should be a close and interesting fight but I believe if Opetaia lets his hands go he should do enough to hold onto his belt, but may need to dominates due to the inconsistency of British judging and officiating.
Opetaia has slightly better experience and boxing skills.
Play: Opetaia -500 @ BetOnline.ag
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