Manny Pacquiao to defend WBO welterweight title against Jeff Horn in July

Telegraph Sport
It will be Pacquiao's first fight in Australia - PA Archive/PA Images

Manny Pacquiao will fight in Australia for the first time when he defends his WBO welterweight title against Jeff Horn on Saturday, July 1 at Brisbane's Suncorp Stadium.

The Filipino, who has held one of the four major world belts in six weight classes but is often recognised as an eight-division champion, had earlier this year agreed a showdown with former stablemate Amir Khan.

Pacquiao and Khan both announced on their Twitter feeds in February a "super-fight" had been arranged for April 23, only to see the bout fall through.

That led the 38-year-old's handlers to resume talks with the relatively-unknown Horn and a deal has been struck for a fight in the Australian's home city.

Khan has long been linked with a fight with Pacquiao, but it has failed to materialise Credit: Getty Images

Pacquiao's promoter Bob Arum said on his company's official website, www.toprank.com: "Manny has been a pioneer, bringing world title fights to Cowboys Stadium (in Texas), The Venetian Macao's Cotai Arena (in China) and now Suncorp Stadium.

"We're boxing's version of Lewis & Clark, discovering new markets.

"Manny knows who will be the crowd favourite on July 1, but he can't wait to give Australia and the world a great performance. It's going to be an unbelievable event."

Pacquiao (59-6-2, 38KOs) regained the WBO belt he lost to Floyd Mayweather two years ago by outpointing Jessie Vargas last November.

He will be an overwhelming favourite in the first defence of his crown against Horn, who competed at London 2012 and has compiled a record of 16 wins from 17 fights as a professional, with one draw.

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