Manny Pacquiao Responds to Reporters Question about Jeff Horn’s ‘Dirty Style’ During Title Fight
Boxing veteran and legend of the ring Manny Pacquiao was left stunned by the judges on Sunday afternoon, who gave a unanimous decision victory to his opponent, Australian boxer Jeff Horn who had come into the fight as an 8-1 underdog. Pacquiao is normally quiet in defeat and said post fight that he accepted the result, as controversial as it may be.
That is until the legendary pugilist broke from his well-crafted facade during an interview on the Filipino news network ANC.
Pacquiao alluded to the fact that Horn had employed some dirty techniques during the fight, and questioned whether the referee Mark Nelson may have allowed Horn to get away with some fairly questionable conduct. The 38-year old’s interview was translated by boxing fans on Reddit, who noted that Pacquiao had drawn attention to Horn’s use of elbows and headbutts during the bout.
An edited version of the transcript follows:
Reporter: Manny, can you comment on the fight because it seemed too physical and rough?
Pacquiao: It’s OK to play that kind of game as long as the referee knows what he’s doing. I don’t have any gripes on Horn’s play-style. Those can be avoided on the discretion of the referee.
Reporter: There were a lot of head-clashes, neck-holds, elbow strikes, right?
Pacquiao: Yes. There were lots of those because the referee did nothing. He seemed inexperienced. I don’t know if it was deliberate or not.
Reporter: The referee should’ve given warnings.
Pacquiao: There were warnings. There was even a two-point deduction on the two headbutts. But nothing was given by the referee.
Reporter: Were you overpowered by Horn’s size and the weight of his punches? How hard were his punches?
Pacquiao: No, not at all. I managed to block his punches. The only problem was his elbow strikes and headbutts. (Pacquiao laughs). Our heads even collided.
While Pacquiao is generally very classy in defeat, it is likely the content of the interview will stir up some anger among fans of Horn. Pacquiao’s coach Freddy Roach was steadfast in his assessment of the bout, telling the media that he was surprised how “dirty a fighter” Horn had been during the bout.
“He took a lot of shots. And he gave good shots, but I didn’t think he was that dirty a fighter or that rough a fighter. He was very, very physical,” said Roach. “The referee let him fight that way all night. When you end every exchange with a headlock something’s wrong. Someone is not doing something right… Manny lost the fight, but Jeff Horn looks like a pumpkin. Those scores, that card? It should be the other way around.”
Who do you think won the bout? Let us know in the comments!