Michael Zerafa vs Jeff Horn Preview Dec. 18th
There’s a big domestic rematch down under this Wednesday, December 18th as former world champion Jeff Horn will be tangling with Michael Zerafa in Brisbane, Australia for Zerafa’s WBA Oceania, and WBO Oriental Middleweight Titles. The two met at the end of August with Zerafa dropping Horn in the second round and then stopping him in the ninth of a slugfest to win the belts. Before that, Horn fought last November and stopped fellow Australian and former world champion Anthony Mundine in just 96 seconds while Zerafa fought in April and stopped Les Sherrington in the second round.
Zerafa vs Horn Betting Odds
- Jeff Horn +200
- Michael Zerafa -260
The 31-year-old Horn of Brisbane is a former physical education teacher who will climb through the ropes with a record of 19-2-1 with 13 Kos to his name. He’s a former Olympian who reached the quarterfinals of the 2012 Games in London, England as a junior welterweight. He turned pro the next year and has fought 136 rounds since. Horn has also won a few inter-continental titles along the way before taking Manny Pacquiao’s WBO world title via a gift decision in July of 2017. He defended it once against Gary Corcoran via an 11th-round TKO.
He was stopped in nine rounds by Terence Crawford in June, 2018 and lost the crown in his second defence. Horn has also beaten the likes of Ali Funeka, Randall Bailey, Ahmed El Mousaoui and Rico Mueller with his lone draw being a three-round technical affair with Rivan Cesaire in August, 2013. Horn stands 5-feet-9-inches tall with a 68-inch reach. He has decent power with a current knockout ratio of 59.1 per cent. He’s not a finesse boxer by any means as he relies on his aggression to win fights and so far he’s been relatively successful at it until running into Crawford and Zerafa.
As for Zerafa of Melbourne, he was a relative unknown until stepping into the ring with former world champion Kell Brook last December. He showed a lot of heart but dropped a 12-round unanimous decision in England. Zerafa was also stopped by former world champ Peter Quillin in the fifth round in September of 2015 on a nationally-televised bout in North America. Zerafa climbs into the ring with a mark of 27-3 along with 16 Kos and has fought 185 rounds since turning pro back in 2011. He’s not a huge puncher and owns a current knockout ratio of 53.3 per cent.
Zerafa stands 5-feet-11-inches tall with a 71.5-inch wingspan. This gives him a two-inch edge in height and a 3.5-inch reach advantage on Horn. His other loss was a unanimous decision at the hands of Arif Magomedov in October of 2014. Zerafa has won several regional and minor titles as a pro, but other than Horn, Quillin and Brook it’s pretty hard to recognize any of his other opponents. So far he’s also captured the WBA Oceania, Commonwealth (British Empire), WBC Asian Boxing Council Continental, and Victoria State Light Middleweight Titles as well as the IBF Pan Pacific Middleweight Championship.
Zerafa really rose to the occasion against Horn a few months ago and surprised him with his speed and power. He has a slight edge in height and reach and possesses pretty good skills and a decent chin. Horn has proven to be a durable fighter with the limited skills he possesses and he might get some energy from the home crowd this time around. This could end up being another exciting fight and I think Zerafa should be able to win again. It’s hard to predict what his state of mind will be though as his 27-year-old sparring partner Dwight Ritchie sadly passed away during a training session last month after being hit with a body shot by Zerafa.
Zerafa’s speed and power were too much for Horn in August.
Play: Zerafa -260 @ BetOnline.ag
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