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Horn secures strong opening round win

1 August 2012

BOXING: Jeff Horn has put on a dominant display in his opening round fight against Zambia’s Gilbert Coombe, winning the light welterweight bout 19-5.

Admitting he knew nothing about his opponent prior to the fight, Horn came out the aggressor throwing a flurry of punches to immediately have his opponent on the back foot.

Horn stalked Coombe from the outset and penetrated the African’s defence landing a combination of body and head shots while remaining defensively sound.

A strong right jab from the Queenslander was the highlight of the round, and potentially the fight, as he shook up the Zambian and worked his way to a strong 6-1 lead at the end of the first.

The 2010 Zambian national Under-20 champion (U/60kg) showed some resolve in the second as the pair traded punches, but despite not showing the intensity he served up for the crowd in the opening round, Horn still managed to take the round 4-2 and secure a commanding 10-3 as the fight entered the final round.

Horn returned to his opening round form in the third as he continued to frustrate the apprehensive African, picking his angles, attacking consistently and landing punch after punch to secure his best round of the fight, 9-2, and open his London campaign with the most dominant Australian victory so far, 19-5.

“I’m very happy with the win of course,” said Horn. “I came last year so it is familiar territory for me.”

“We’ve got 50% of the boys (Australian Team) in (the next round) and hopefully we get a couple more in tomorrow. It’s exciting times.”

Despite the boisterous crowd clearly in Coombe’s corner, Horn admits he wasn’t phased by the crowd’s jeers as the Australian – British rivalry continues to extend beyond head-to-head matches between the nations.

“I always expected that. I’ve come to watch the other boys and they’ve always been on the opposite side to the Aussies but it’s all good, it’s what it’s all about.”

With the coaches unable to do much scouting of his first-up opponent, Horn admits he fought the fight on the fly and adjusted as he had to to get the win.

“I fought just how the fight panned out. I moved if I had to move and came forward when I needed to come forward.

“All I knew about him was that he was prepared to die a little bit in that ring but I was prepared to die – not just a little bit.”

Horn will now fight Tunisia’s Abderrazak Houya who had a close 19-16 victory over Azerbaijan’s Gaybatulla Gadzhialiyev immediately following Horn’s victory. 

Jai Opetaia and Johan Linde will compete tomorrow (Day 5) for the Australians.

Matt Bartolo in London

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