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Ex-Aussie champ picks Manny


PhilBoxing.com




Former Australian flyweight and bantamweight champion Todd Makelim said the other day a decision may not be necessary in WBO welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao?s title defense against challenger Jeff Horn because the fight could end early with the Filipino retaining his crown by stoppage.

Over 50,000 fans are expected to jam the SunCorp Stadium for the ?Battle of Brisbane? with Australian fans coming in full force to support Horn, a former schoolteacher. But Makelim, who was halted by Pacquiao in Kidapawan in 1999, said the large crowd won?t influence the outcome.

?As it is my understanding, the right officials have been appointed to judge the fight,? said the 48-year-old Makelim, a Sydney resident whose grandfather Alejandro Tabal was Filipino. ?Speaking to friends and work colleagues, I believe there will be a very large number of spectators who are Filipinos living in Australia, given that there are approximately 200,000 Filipino residents. A great support crowd will back Manny, too. I personally think that the fight might not go the distance and could finish early in Manny?s favor so the outcome will not be influenced by a decision.?

Mark Nelson of Minnesota will be the referee in the scheduled 12-round fight. His previous world title assignment was when WBO/WBC superlightweight titlist Terence Crawford stopped John Molina, Jr. in the eighth round in Omaha last December. The judges will be Waleksa Roldan of New York, Chris Flores of Arizona and Ramon Cerdan of Argentina.

While Makelim picked Pacquiao to win, he said it?s not a certainty. ?I believe the fight is definitely in Manny?s favor but there?s that old saying, ?you?re one punch away from winning or one punch away from losing,?? he said. ?Speaking from experience, I don?t believe age has anything on Manny as he is well experienced and carries a great professionalism.? Pacquiao is 38 with 64 fights under his belt while Horn is 29 with 17 bouts. Pacquiao?s record is 56-6-2, with 38 KOs, compared to Horn?s 16-0-1, with 11 KOs.

?I believe Manny is a very versatile professional boxer and can easily adapt to any style that Horn brings to the ring,? said Makelim who now trains, manages and promotes fighters. ?From my observations, I think Horn is quite slow in comparison to Manny. Horn likes to come forward with minimal head movement, closing the gap which is a suitable situation that Manny will use to his advantage.?

Makelim said the ability to adjust during a fight is critical and it?s an advantage for Pacquiao that Freddie Roach and Justin Fortune will be in his corner. ?Being able to make mid-fight adjustments against the likes of Manny can only prove to be more difficult,? he said. ?Viewing previous fights of Horn, I find it hard to imagine that he has the ability to make mid-fight adjustments.?


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Joaquin Henson.


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