Erika Montoya Mexico City / 04.07.2022 22:55:00 He could not even speak, his jaw was completely locked, two
Mexico City / 04.07.2022 22:55:00
He could not even speak, his jaw was completely locked, two fractures in the lower jaw prevented him from being able to say anything, but Jai Opetaia’s eyes could not hide the pleasure of knowing that he was world champion at 27 years of age.
On Saturday night in Australia, the fighter of Samoan origin defeated the Latvian monarch Mairis Briedis and snatched the cruiserweight title of the International Boxing Federation from him.
Although Opetaia is not well known on this side of the world, the 1.88-meter-tall fighter comes from a lineage of boxers, on his father’s side and also on his mother’s, and from the age of 12 he set himself the goal of becoming champion.
Mairis Briedis visits Jai Opetaia in the dressing room after their fight and discovers he broke Jai’s jaw in round 2 and wishes he knew sooner. Calls for rematch. Briedis also had his nose broken. Likely from that round 4 uppercut. #BriedisOpetaia pic.twitter.com/j6mo6gMK9E
— TstreeT Controversy (@Terel_Vann) July 2, 2022
At the age of 16, he became the youngest Australian boxer in the country to attend the Olympic Games and although it did not go very well, since he came out in his second fight, he set a precedent.
The broken jaw came very early in the fight, as it was during the second round, and for 10 rounds (half an hour of fighting) he stayed ahead of the experienced Breidis to win the first championship of his life. However, the feeling of pain during a fight is no stranger to Opetaia, who despite his youth, this is the third major injury. Five years ago he broke his hand and also suffered a strange rib fracture.
Opetaia showed a lot of heart and assured that he will defend the crown at any cost, regardless of whether it is a rematch with Mairis Briedis or some other champion within the division.
The Australian has a record of 22-0 with 17 knockouts and his victory is one of the most important in Australian boxing history. Along with Jeff Horn’s surprising win over Manny Pacquiao.