Tim Tszyu vs Tony Harrison: The Battle For Charlo And The Growth Of Boxing Down Under
Australia’s Bona Fide star Tim Tszyu (21-0, 15 KOs) meets American Tony Harrison (29-3-1, 21 KOs) for the WBO Interim super welterweight title on Sunday, March 12 at the Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney Olympic Park, New South Wales, Australia.
Tszyu vs Harrison, promoted by No Limit and televised live on pay-per-view in Australia (Showtime Sports in the US, No UK TV yet), is the main attraction of a No Limit/Foxtel doubleheader which also featured the leading Australian promotion’s newest signing Brock Jarvis stopping the Philippines Marlon Paniamogan in 4 rounds on Wednesday.
This bout comes as a surprise to many in the fight game, as Tszyu was called WBO mandatory challenger to undisputed champion Jermell Charlo last year. Charlo vs Tszyu was scheduled for January but Charlo pulled out with an injury. Many in the game think Harrison is an extremely risky fight for the Australian, with a loss being catastrophic for his title ambitions at this stage.
A loss is not only disastrous for Tszyu’s career but No Limit and Australian boxing as the 28-year-old is by far the biggest star in an emerging market and a key reason why No Limit could secure the Foxtel exclusive late last year.
Tim, the son of the former super lightweight world champion Kostya, has spent the vast majority of his career in Australia winning the commonwealth title, as well as various WBO ranking, belts. He holds impressive stoppage wins over Dennis Hogan, Steve Spark, and Jeff Horn. Tszyu made his US debut last time out in an attempt to build the Charlo fight, taking a UD victory over Terrell Gausha.
Former champion Harrison has had a stellar career, winning the WBC title against now undisputed champion Charlo in December 2018. Charlo went on to beat Harrison in a rematch, however, most viewers had Harrison well ahead at the time of the 11th-round stoppage.
“Super Bad” has turned his attention away from his own career, training undisputed super Featherweight Champion Alycia Baumgardner. Harrison is coming off an impressive win over then-unbeaten Sergio Garcia in April last year.
This bout promises to deliver something special, with the potential break-out performance of a rising star, or an old veteran turning back the clock. A real 50-50 on our hands on Sunday night and a must-win for the momentum of the sport of boxing down under.