Sick And Beaten, Horn Stands At Crossroads
Entering into last week, Jeff Horn was riding a wave of positivity that could have seen him fighting again for a world title this December in Tokyo, now at the dawn of a new week, illness and a heartbreaking loss have sent the former school teacher home with his career in limbo.
Horn stepped into the ring at Bendigo Stadium on August 31st looking to right the wrongs of 2018, but Michael Zerafa sent the former WBO welterweight champion to the canvas twice during their fight, with the end coming in the ninth round of their middleweight battle.
A proposed December 23rd fight with WBA regular middleweight champion Ryota Murata in Japan is now up in smoke, as Horn is forced to decide what is best for him at this stage of the game.
“I definitely don’t want to be doing this game for too long that’s for sure, you don’t want to be battered up and bruised,” Horn said.
Horn’s trainer Glenn Rushton gave an honest appraisal of his fighter’s mindset following the crushing loss on Saturday, saying Horn needs to decide if he’s still determined enough to put in the work to be a world champion/
“I’ve got to do some soul searching and see if I’ve got what it takes in myself to do hard preparation and get ready for another big fight like this,” Horn said.
“We’ve got to sit down and have that long, hard talk and say exactly what does that look like, diet-wise work-wise and really put the effort in,” Rushton said.
“If it’s going to be at middleweight it means we’ve got to change the body structure a little bit and not eat pizzas and drink Coke.”
“Middleweight to me doesn’t mean that you eat whatever you want, it means that you’ve obviously got to be very disciplined,” Rushton continued. “I think Jeff realizes, you’ve got to have that lean muscle mass, at middle and you’ve got to be a ripped middle, which means a lot of hard work if you want to go that route.”
“I felt like I couldn’t get my shots off, they weren’t landing as good as I wanted, it was frustrating me from pretty much the beginning,” Horn said of how he felt at middleweight.
Rushton said Horn had just an eight-week preparation after taking three weeks off for the birth of his second child and needed everything to go right but suffered from sniffles and a sore throat last Monday.
Having only an eight-week camp, cut from 11 due to the birth of his second child, Horn and Rushton had a less than ideal preparation schedule, coupled with the former world champion feeling ill on fight week.
“I don’t want to use the excuse: ‘I’ve been sick’, all props to Michael Zerafa for winning the fight,” Horn said.
Report: Boxing Scene