Horn Stops Corcoran In 11th Round
Jeff Horn’s first defense of the WBO welterweight title did not come easy for the school teacher turned world champion, but the unbeaten Australian made sure this would be a clear cut win in his hometown.
Horn would battle past cuts above both eyes, bloodied British challenger Gary Corcoran to the point where Corcoran’s trainer, Frank Greaves, called the fight in the 11th round. Referee Benjy Esteves stepped in to halt the scheduled 12-round bout at 1:35 of the 11th round at Brisbane Exhibition & Convention Centre.
Corcoran was bleeding from a nasty gash over his left eye when the fight ended. Horn was beating Corcoran on all three scorecards at that point (100-90, 99-91, 99-91).
“He definitely pushed me in there,” Horn said.
“My timing was a bit off, but I managed to get him out of there in the end. I was just getting my timing [early in the fight]. The whole fight, I felt it was a little bit off tonight, but I managed to clip him with a few good ones and then, unfortunately, our heads did come together. We’ve both got cuts on our heads. That’s a bit of a shame, but most of it was caused by the punches, I’m pretty sure.”
The 29-year-old Horn made his first defense of his the WBO welterweight title, which Horn won in an upset over Manny Pacquiao on July 2nd at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane. Pacquiao as the heavy favorite over the relatively unknown Horn entering that bout, but Horn won a unanimous decision that was widely considered controversial.
Corcoran entered the ring as the WBO’s No. 10 contender at 147 pounds, and was an optional defense for Horn in his first defense of the WBO welterweight title.
The 27-year-old Corcoran’s loss to Horn was his second in his past four fights. England’s Liam Williams (16-2-1, 11 KOs) dealt Corcoran his first defeat by stopping him in the 11th round of their July 2016 bout in Cardiff, Wales.
Horn’s victory over Corcoran moved him toward a mandatory defense against Terence Crawford in his next fight. The WBO installed Crawford as its No. 1 contender at 147 pounds, after Crawford decided to give up his IBF, WBA, WBC and WBO 140-pound championships to move up to welterweight.
“Look, it’s a big possibility,” Horn said of facing Crawford sometime in April. “If that’s what everyone wants to see, that’s what’s gonna happen. It’s all the entertainment business, of course.”
Corcoran mounted a come back in the 10th round by landing jabs and left hooks.
Corcoran’s work rate had slowed down by the ninth round, as Horn was able to land and move out of Corcoran’s punching range consistently.
Corcoran snapped back Horn’s head with a hard jab about 15 seconds into the eighth round. Horn hit Corcoran, who bled from a worsening cut above his left eye, with a left hook on his hip later in the eighth, which made Corcoran move away from him.
Horn’s jab was effective in the seventh round, as he consistently landed it to keep Corcoran at a distance. Corcoran went down with just over two minutes to go in the seventh round, but Esteves ruled that trip to the canvas was caused by a push.
Corcoran drew a warning from Esteves for hitting Horn with a right hand after the bell sounded to end the seventh round. By the seventh round, Horn had cuts over his right and left eyes.
Blood began flowing from a cut over Horn’s left eye early in the sixth round. Horn and Corcoran spent much of the sixth round trading jabs, clinching and clashing heads.
Corcoran also landed an overhand right to Horn’s jaw in the sixth.
Horn’s left-right combination landed just before the midway mark of the fifth round. Horn later landed a right uppercut in the fifth.
Corcoran came back by landing an overhand right that made Horn retreat in the final minute of the fifth.