Jai Opetaia to Jump into Deep Waters Against Mairis Briedis
Australian cruiserweight Jai Opetaia (21-0, 17 KO’s) will next face what looks to be his toughest opponent to date. On July 2, the talented southpaw contender will take on IBF cruiserweight champion Mairis Briedis (28-1, 20 KO’s). Their showdown will be housed in Gold Coast Convention Centre in Opetaia’s own Australian backyard. The dustup will stand as the second bout of the year for the undefeated upstart. Opetaia enters the about carrying a three-fight knockout streak.
Since his amateur days, it’s been evident that Opetaia was a talent with the potential for a bright future. Although it should come as little surprise due to him being a third generation fighter on his mother’s side and fourth on his father’s. At the tender age of 16, Opetaia qualified for the Olympics while competing as a heavyweight but was beaten before medaling. Now, as a professional, he is ranked #8 (WBO) and #4 (IBF) and looking to become a champion.
Currently, Opetaia is promoted by the somewhat controversial Dean Lonergan, of Dean Lonergan Events, who also promotes fellow Australian notable and one-time world champion Jeff Horn. The Australian will stand as Briedis’s second title defense, having just stopped Artur Mann in the third round this past October 16, 2021. The Latvian initially bested Yuniel Dorticos by way of majority decision to obtain the belt on September 26, 2020. Obviously, if victorious, this would be a tremendous and life changing win for Opetaia. So let’s wait and see how he handles himself in this big moment.
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By: Bakari Simpson