By Craig Watt
It was announced at the Foxtel Television headquarters in Sydney, Australia today that seven time world champion Roy Jones Jr (54-5,40 KO’s) would be coming to Australia on December 2nd to take on IBO Cruiserweight champion Danny Green (27-3, 24 KO’s). The fight will be held at the Acer Arena, formerly the Sydney Superdome which was created at the heart of the Olympic Village for the 2000 Sydney Olympics. It has a capacity of 20,000 fans and represents one of the most impressive arenas in Australia. The 36 year old Green confirmed that his company Green Machine Boxing, in association with Square Ring Promotions and Events NSW will promote the event which is the biggest boxing match in Australian history. The contract for the fight was signed by both parties live at the press conference.
In creating the match up Danny Green has secured three world titles in his 30 fight career as WBC super-middleweight, WBA light heavyweight and recently the IBO cruiserweight title with a 5th round stoppage of Argentinean Julio Cesar Dominguez in Biloxi, Mississippi in August. It is Green’s IBO title at Cruiserweight which will give Roy Jones Jr the chance to add a world title at the only weight to elude him from middleweight to heavyweight in his illustrious career to date which has seen him win an impressive seven world titles in his 59 fights.
Roy Jones Jr joined the press conference from his home of Pensacola, Florida via telecast and gave his reasons for coming to Australia. The 40 year old stated, “I am not here to listen to Danny Green’s story – I am here to tell him I will tear his dream apart. No one has ever won every world title from middleweight to heavyweight. I love making boxing history and I want to be remembered in the sport as one of the best ever fighters. If I win the world cruiserweight title I will have completed a unique boxing achievement that no other fighter has done in the history of the sport- I want to be that fighter who has won the middleweight, super-middleweight, light-heavyweight, cruiserweight and heavyweight titles. I will be coming to entertain the people of Australia but my motivation is to win the IBO Cruiserweight title and make my statement to boxing history. I will be the only living boxer to achieve this and that makes me proud, excited and motivated.”
Jones continued, ‘They don’t give boxers world championship belts for nothing and he has won three world titles and he is a great ambassador for his country of Australia. He has a lot of heart and it will be a good fight for all the fans.”
Danny Green added to the conference, “Watching Roy against Jeff Lacy was impressive and he is one of the greatest fighters in boxing history but I am no Jeff Lacy. He is trying to knock me out in front of my friends and family in my home country of Australia and that is personal and I will be aiming to knock him out. I am a different ball game to Jeff Lacy and I will be putting the metal to the pedal and making sure I am remembered as one of the best fighters in Australian boxing history. You are going to have to kill me to beat me- I have so much mongrel in me. I am excited, emotional and this victory will be the pinnacle of my career.”
Roy Jones countered, “I am not stupid – I know Danny Green is not Jeff Lacy and it is a different fight. I am not comparing and I have been in this sport for many years and I know it will be a different fight, different opponent and Danny has different skills that I have seen and I am aware of but I am excited about this challenge. It is the challenge and chance to beat Danny Green in his backyard for this title that motivates me more than ever. If there is one country I am confident of getting a fair crack of the whip then it is Australia.”
Green added further, “My mission in this fight is to seek and destroy. Under my trainer Angelo Hyder my boxing ability has improved but my plan is to wear down Roy Jones and take his heart. I am boxing in my home country and this will motivate me like I have never been motivated before.”
When questioned about what weight Roy Jones Jr would come to the fight he added, “I know from the problems I had going up to heavyweight that I am likely to come in light for this bout at cruiserweight. I know that I bring speed to this fight and I don’t plan to concede in this area.”
The press conference was headed by New South Wales Government Premier, Nathan Rees who opened the conference and stated, “This event is a great advert for our great city of Sydney and the government of New South Wales are proud to be involved in one of the biggest fights ever in Australia in one of the biggest weeks of sport for our great city.” The event marks a big sporting week for Sydney, in addition to the boxing event with the Australian Golf Open and V8 Supercars Grand Prix expected to bring an extra 150,000 sports fans to the city in just one week. This sporting week is being promoted as “Super Week” and is expected to add $30m to the Sydney economy.
Many people believe this is the biggest global boxing name to fight in Australia since the great heavyweight Jack Johnson came to Sydney in 1908 and defeated Tommy Burns for the world heavyweight title over 14 rounds at the Sydney Stadium. This was the first time in world boxing that a black athlete had fought for the world heavyweight title and 20,000 fans witnessed boxing history in Sydney. After this fight Jack Johnson would reign as world heavyweight champion for a further six and a half years.
The fight will be shown on a PPV basis in Australia on Main Events and Roy Jones will come to Australia in the next two weeks for a press tour to promote the event.
Tickets will go on sale via Ticketek on Wednesday 30th September in Australia.