By Tim Ellis
One of the biggest rivalries in Australian sporting history will resume at the Adelaide oval on Friday, February 3rd nearly 11 years on from when the pair first met way back in May 2006 in a 12 round eliminator for the WBA World title.
Back then both were in their respective physical primes with Mundine nearly 31 and Green 33, since that time Green has often made excuses after their fight about having to cut weight which to many sounds like sour grapes having always fought at the super middleweight limit since turning professional.
Having fought their respective careers at Super Middleweight, both captured titles, Mundine the WBA Super middleweight World Title in September 2003 over American Antwon Echols and Green toppling Canadian Eric Lucas for the “Interim” WBC super middleweight World Title a few months later in December.
A lot has happened since that time, Mundine went down to middleweight and junior middleweight, winning versions of world titles whilst Green alternatively went up to light heavyweight winning a title.
At the time the move came with the feeling of frustration, many hoping for the rematch but Green insttead decided to retire before joining the cast on Dancing with the Stars.
His dancing career was inevitably short lived, making his come back to boxing in the cruiserweight division.
Which brings us to the rematch, to be fought at a catch weight of 83kgs. issues arise the main being, Mundine has never fought over 77kgs (his last fight was at super welterweight 69.85), so on the night of the fight he will be going up more than 13kgs which from this writers point of view is crazy.
This fight should have been fought at the light heavyweight limit which Green is a former world champion, to get the fight over the line, Green has had his say at the negotiating table, obviously a ploy to give himself every advantage by being the bigger man.
Mundine will only weigh in at a max 78-79kg whereas Green will come in right on the limit of 83kgs. further swelling to somewhere in the region of 87-88 kgs after hydration on the night of the fight, so there will be nearly a 10kgs difference when both step through the ropes.
Both now well into their forties, this is a swan song for both who deserve one final payday for all they have given to Australian boxing, even if Danny has lived off Mundine’s name throughout his career.
One of Australia’s greatest fighters Jeff Fenech has been very critical of Green for making this fight at a the unfair weight advantage saying “Ten years ago it was a great fight, lived up to all the hype and expectation but Anthony proved that he was way the better man. Anthony proved that at their primes that he was better. Anthony beat him, not just beat him slogged him in the first fight, this is nowhere near Their primes”
Danny will be looking for revenge never fully able to accept the boxing lesson he was given first time around. Their first fight remains the highest selling Pay Per View event in the history of Australian boxing.
This fight won’t compare to that but it will still captures the imagination of the Australian public. The pressure will be on Green to reverse the embarrassed but will be the heavy favourite with the big weight advantage for this fight.
Mundine is also coming off a hip replacement 9-10 months ago and is battling tendinitis in both elbows. If Mundine can pull off the impossible and beat the bigger man AGAIN he will only add to his incredible 22-year dual sport professional legacy.
Danny will no doubt be training like a man possessed and as always given everything he has. the question is, Will Mundine once again make him look limited or will his mounting injuries and the punishment that he suffered, with two knockout losses in his last three fights, play a huge factor?
Danny Green thinks so “Chocs a fierce competitor, a gifted athlete, but it’s a simple psychological fact that the damage that has been done to Choc in his last 3 fights, he can’t take that back”.
Clearly, Danny thinks Anthony is washed up also stating a few years ago that “Mundine is like a washed up log”.
Then recently saying “He can’t withstand punishment like he could In 2006.” Not that Green caused any punishment to Mundine in 06. Green also claims to be a better fighter yet he couldn’t win a round in their first encounter. Will ‘The Man Mundine dominate The Green Machine again? Not long to find out.