Boxing: The five-minute meeting that teed up $30m superfight

Anthony Mundine (right) throws a punch towards Danny Green during their fight in 2006. Photo / Getty Images
Anthony Mundine (right) throws a punch towards Danny Green during their fight in 2006. Photo / Getty Images

The meeting didn't last much longer than five minutes before Anthony Mundine got out of his seat at the Veloce cafe at Sydney airport and walked off.

He's not there for the small talk or to exchange pleasantries.

Especially as his arch enemy Danny Green is sitting directly opposite him at the table.

It's Friday morning and the pair finally agree to a $30 million fight of the century to end a bitter decade-long feud and years of sledging and hatred. Mundine 41, Green 43. Man v Machine.

Sydney, Melbourne or Perth will be the venue as the pair face off for the first time since their infamous 2006 fight in front of 30,000 fans at Allianz Stadium, the night Mundine won in a unanimous points decision.

A fight to stop a nation and a boxing blockbuster as big as this country has ever staged.

An onlooker at the cafe on Friday morning described the meeting as tense and business-like. You could almost feel the animosity.

There is Green, Mundine, his manager Khoder Nasser, his dad Tony Mundine and Green's agent Justin Manolikos.

"You could tell they were talking serious business," the onlooker said.

"Mundine spoke for about five minutes and then left. The rest of the group stayed for an hour."

They agree on a weight and a 50/50 split of the takings.

It's now up to the two agents to find a venue and settle on a date.

"Bring it on," Mundine says, "I'll be the first fighter in history to come from super welterweight to over light heavyweight and win.

"I'll admit it's a David v Goliath story because he's a lot bigger, but who cares.

"Skills pay the bills. Speed will beat power like I showed him last time.

"This is my last fight. I know I'm against the odds but I've gotta win at all costs, and I will.

"It will be an historic moment in Australian boxing when I do it."

The fight will be shown on either Main Event pay-television or possibly even on free-to-air if networks Ten, Nine or Seven are prepared to offer the multimillion-dollar broadcast fee promoters are chasing.

The genuine hatred between the pair will ensure record TV figures, ticket sales and sponsorship for a fight which will almost certainly be the last for both fighters. They will potentially walk away with $10 million each in prizemoney.

The Mundine and Green fight in 2006 still ranks as the biggest holding boxing match in TAB's betting history.

"We held $4 million on the fight, which to put into perspective is more than an Origin game," said TAB's Matt Jenkins.

"An unbelievable amount of betting interest considering it was 10 years ago.

"Mayweather-Pacquiao couldn't even beat it for betting interest, holding just over $3 million.

"Despite the fighters being past their best it will still generate huge betting interest and could go down as our biggest ever."

After years of public slanging matches, they have agreed to fight at 83kg.

Mundine, who last fought at 69kg will have to put on almost 10kg. Green will have to lose about four.

"I've got a new hip and I feel totally rejuvenated," Mundine said.

"On my day I can beat anybody, anywhere. Boxing is a science and speed will always beat power.

"Only a man like myself can do what I'm going to do to him.

"I'll be ready in six months."

Mundine admits the money is the big motivator but adds: "We've both wanted this to happen to settle this grudge for a very long time.

"He's been talking s*** but I'm not going to be leaving him with any more excuses.

"I'm going to hurt him. I know a lot of people will be thinking he's too big and strong but I'll prove them wrong like I've done over my entire career.

"I'll come in at about 80 kilos and I'll be as explosive as I've ever been."

Green obviously has other ideas. He will start a warm favourite because it's much easier to lose four kilos than gain 10. He is two years older but as fit as he's ever been.

It's the fight he's wanted as much as Mundine for years.

In his most recent outburst, Green spoke of Mundine's incapability to knock him out back in 2006.

"Ten years ago I stupidly gobbled up all your shots, yet marched forward after you with you on your bike till the final bell sounded," he said.

"You could not put me away. I was in shocking physical condition, to the point where an average club fighter would've knocked me over, yet you failed to even put a dent in me."

Finally, all the trash talk is over and it's time to let their fists do the talking.

- news.com.au

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