Underdog Michael Zerafa tore up the script when he scored a 9th round upset win over Brisbane's former WBO welterweight world champion Jeff Horn at the Bendigo Stadium, in Bendigo, Victoria.
Zerafa had failed each time he had stepped up in class in his career before now. Horn was coming off a 1st round knockout of Anthony Mundine and was hoping to challenge WBA regular middleweight world champion Ryota Murata later in the year, but those plans went up in smoke as Zerafa found a home for his right hand in the 2nd round, flooring Horn. The Brisbane man got to his feet but had a tough time surviving the round. In the 3rd, Horn remarkably rocked Zerafa to his boots with a left hook and tried everything to finish proceedings there and then.
That was Horn's real chance to turn things around but Zerafa survived and although there was some great action throughout, the feeling was that Horn was struggling because he was fighting outside his own weight division.
In the 9th round, Zerafa forced the referee to jump in and stop the contest after he floored Horn, who beat the count but looked unsteady.
It will be interesting to see if Zerafa is offered the Murata fight.