BILLY Dib knows a thing or two about high-profile fights.
The former two-division titleholder, who is currently in Oxnard, California training under the astute eye of renowned trainer Robert Garcia, was recently quizzed by American journalist Elie Seckbach about the looming WBO welterweight title fight between Manny Pacquiao and Jeff Horn.
Given the unfamiliarity of Horn to American audiences, the opinion of Dib (42-4, 24 KOs) clearly carries weight. With that said, the 31-year-old didn’t pull any punches when assessing the July 2nd clash.
“He’s pretty good, he’s alright,” said Dib to EsNews.
“Of course, he’s probably a big fan of Manny Pacquiao. The thing is – the kid has worked his way into that position – it’s for certain reasons that Manny Pacquiao is flying to Australia to fight him, it’ll be great money for Manny Pacquiao.”
“The thing is, I don’t think there’s a network that is willing to pay Manny the kind of money here in America at the moment for a fight like that. I think he’s making ten million dollars.”
“To get 55,000 fans there (to see the fight), that’s going to make Jeff Horn a star for a little while. And he’s going to get paid decent money, I guess.”
Having experienced the spotlight at the highest level, Dib has a firm understanding of the pressure that accompanies a world title opportunity. For that reason, he is able to make an honest assessment of Horn’s title bid.
“I’m going to be honest with you man,” he concluded. “I know he’s my countryman – and I wish him all the best – it would be great to see an Australian guy win. The way this fight has been put together, it’s been put together for Manny to win by devastating knockout.”
“I hope Jeff wins, but I’ve gotta go with the odds makers. The odds makers are gonna say that Manny’s going to win and he’s gonna win big, so that’s what I think is going to happen.”
Dib is rated as the third highest contender for the IBF super featherweight crown, presently held by American dynamo Gervonta Davis, who faces unbeaten Englishman Liam Walsh this weekend.
Photo: Milos Lekovic/Southside Studios