- Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events
Big-time boxing is coming to Bendigo with superstar Jeff Horn and world-rated Victorian Michael Zerafa to battle it out at Bendigo Stadium on Saturday, 31 August.
The fight was secured with support from the Andrews Labor Government’s $20 million Regional Events Fund and is expected to draw fans from around the country to the newly-refurbished Bendigo Stadium.
Horn become an Australian great after he claimed the world welterweight championship in 2017 with a famous victory in Brisbane over superstar Manny Pacquiao. His opponent in Bendigo, Zerafa, will claim home-state favouritism due to his Melbourne roots.
With the fight to be broadcast on Foxtel throughout Australia, as well as in New Zealand, the United States and China, it will raise the profile of Bendigo as a premier sporting and tourist destination.
Bendigo Stadium was re-opened in 2018 after a major redevelopment made possible by a $5 million investment by the Labor Government.
The expanded stadium includes three international-standard show courts, with retractable seating that can be extended to create a 4,000-seat arena.
The 31 August fight is the latest big event locked in for Bendigo Stadium. The stadium hosted its first international sporting event – a Boomers v. Kazakhstan men’s basketball match – last September.
Securing the fight is a major coup not only for Bendigo, but also regional Victoria.
Major events are crucial to the state’s economy, generating an estimated $1.8 billion each year and bringing visitors from across Australia and around the world to Victoria.
As stated by Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula
“Victoria is unmatched as the sporting and event capital of Australia and we’re excited to be able to bring such a high-class fight to the brand-new Bendigo Stadium.”
“Sporting events like this are more than just great spectacles, they’re a big driver of the regional economy and offer great opportunities for local businesses.”
As stated by Member for Bendigo West Maree Edwards
“This event will be broadcast across Australia and throughout the United States, China and New Zealand. It’s a terrific opportunity to showcase all that our region has to offer.”