Jeff Horn at Glenn Rushtons Gym . Pic Annette Dew
Jeff Horn at Glenn Rushtons Gym . Pic Annette Dew

How ‘mini taste of retirement’ has Horn pumped for return

Jeff Horn has broken off the shackles of isolation and is ready to break Tim Tszyu apart in Townsville in late August or early September at the 25,000-seat Queensland Country Bank Stadium.

 

Horn's Stretton Boxing Club has officially reopened following the easing of COVID-19 restrictions and after six months without a fight, he is officially on the warpath ready to rumble in Australia's biggest battle.

 

"I actually started back in the gym last week with my trainer, Glenn Rushton, just doing one-on-one stuff,'' Horn said.

 

Watch Boxing Classics on Kayo including ESPN's Mike Tyson Marathon. New to Kayo? Get your free trial now & start streaming instantly >

"But now the gym is officially opened for 20 boxers at a time and we are back in business. I can't wait to fight Tim.

 

"I've been doing almost all my training as a stay-home dad with two daughters, but I've been watching my diet and putting the work in on the exercise bike and with weights. I feel that I am very fit for the start of this campaign.''

 

Rushton said he believed the long break from the gym had done the former world welterweight champion "the world of good".

 

"Jeff has had a mini taste of retirement because of the lockdown and he realises that he still wants very much to fight," Rushton said.

 

"At 32, he's not done yet and I believe that he can beat anyone if he knuckles down and does the work in preparation.

Tszyu and Horn were set to fight initially in April.
Tszyu and Horn were set to fight initially in April.

"We are very confident of beating Tim.''

 

While there has been talk of a Horn-Tszyu fight in a "crowd-less house'' because of social distancing rules, Rushton is confident a short wait will be worthwhile after the original date of April 22 in Townsville was postponed because of the virus.

 

"We don't want to wait forever,'' Rushton said.

 

"But if we wait for a couple more months we will likely see crowds being allowed back to stadiums and people back into pubs and clubs in big numbers.

 

"That make a lot more economic sense for the fight. The NRL has led the way and they are looking at the return of some crowds in July.

 

"That's why we are looking at August or September to fight Tim. Even if crowds are allowed back at 50 per cent capacity by then, that is still 10,000 people for a fight in Townsville and that will mean a great atmosphere and lot of tourist dollars for people up there who really need it.''

The Horn camp is aiming for an August-September fight timeframe.
The Horn camp is aiming for an August-September fight timeframe.

Rushton said the agreement with Tourism and Events Queensland to hold the fight in Townsville ran until August 22, and he planned to honour Horn's commitment even if it meant extending the deal by a few weeks.

 

"There have been so very few cases of the virus in Queensland in recent weeks and we believe crowd restrictions will soon be eased,'' Rushton said.

 

"Gyms have been allowed to open two weeks earlier than was planned, so Jeff is getting ready to fight before a crowd in what is the biggest Australian fight right now.''

 

He said there was "no way'' he would allow Tszyu to have any proposed warm-up bout in the interim.

 

"Horn-Tszyu is too big a fight to let that happen,'' Rushton said.

 

"Jeff will give Tim all the fight he wants and more.''

 

Horn and Tszyu both had their last fights in December.

Originally published as How 'mini taste of retirement' has Horn pumped for return



Gatton mum stole sick friend’s bank card, spent big

premium_icon Gatton mum stole sick friend’s bank card, spent big

A woman stole his bank card and went shopping

First look at $260,000 sculpture to be CBD focal point

premium_icon First look at $260,000 sculpture to be CBD focal point

The sculpture will be one of several artworks in the city centre.