Former Marions star Justin Hodges has beaten social media influencer Jordan Simi to form a home state alongside former NSW captain Paul Gallen.
Hodges earned his fifth win in the ring (now 5-2) on the undercard of Nikita Tsiyu, who muscled out Simi, who was a boxing debutant, in his fight against Ben Horn in Sydney.
Justin Hodges walks to the ring with the following tune. Here comes the boom And delivered plenty of explosive shots in the ring. He couldn’t land the killer blow in the allotted four rounds, but comfortably won each round on all three judges’ scorecards.
He then wasted little time in continuing his long-running war of words with 40-year-old former NRL star Galen.
“I have one more fight left,” he said. “I agreed to it myself, Gal agreed to it. He made a bet: Whichever team home (hosts) won. Queensland should come to Queensland because they kicked their ass.
The former Sharks hardman is more experienced with a 12-2-1 record and has lost two of his past three fights against Justis Huni and Kris Terzievski respectively – both Australian heavyweight title fights went the full 10 rounds.
“He may have more experience than me,” Hodges said, “but I’m going to go out and throw as many right hands as I can and I only have to land him one time.” He’s got a really big head, I hope I catch him.”
Battle of the Brothers: Watch undefeated Nikita Tsiyu take on Ben Horn on Wednesday 20 July at 7pm AEST on Kayo Sports. New to Kayo? Start your free trial now >
“I go into every fight with as much confidence as I play rugby league. It’s a different sport, boxing, and I train my gut. I’m up on the gal, I really don’t give a damn. I’m a man and I’ll face him in the ring.
“They belong to Matty and George (Rose, promoters). They had to bring it to QLD because QLD won the home.
Foxsports.com.au has been told that Gallen is set to attend the event and even plans to step into the ring to challenge Hodges, but Gallen is stuck in rural NSW and has been unable to make the fight-style call.
The 40-year-old former NRL players have been courting the pair for months, with Hodges saying he was interested in getting in the ring with Gallen after his last win over former Queensland teammate Ben Hannan.
“If Queenslanders want to see me get rid of the dirty cockroach,” Hodges said after that fight last month.
“I know Gal has a lot more experience than me, but I’m going to jump in, I’m not going to give a ***. I don’t know how long I’ll last, but if I find him, I know he’ll sleep.”
Gallen said last month that he would fight Hodges “any day of the week”, and even interrupted Hodges’ radio interview by calling the station and pretending to be “Paul from Cronulla”.
The pair agreed at the time that the battle should be over which state would win the State of Origin series – with the Maroons going on to win Game 3 in Brisbane.
Now the long-awaited deal appears to be formal, with Hodges having the home advantage if the pair stick to their earlier deal.