NRL great Justin Hodges threatened to “flog” his former State of Origin teammate Ben Hannant for failing to show up to a pre-fight media conference.
The two retired rugby league stars are scheduled to square off in the ring on the undercard of Liam Wilson and Matias Rueda in Brisbane on Wednesday.
But when media gathered on Monday to hear from all the fighters ahead of their bouts, Hodges’ opponent was nowhere to be seen.
And the former 13-Test Australian centre did not mince his words when asked about the absent Hannant.
“It is extremely disappointing, especially after all the rubbish that he’s been talking,” Hodges, 40, said.
“I don’t know where he is. Hopefully George (Rose from No Limit Boxing) can find him.
“He’s probably down the M1 on the Gold Coast getting a suntan, the big fella.
“But it is extremely disappointing. We’ve been training for four weeks, hard, and to get here and he’s not here is extremely disappointing.
“If he doesn’t turn up I’m going to have to drive down there and flog him outside the ring.
“Hopefully he turns up tomorrow to the weigh-in, I’ll definitely be there.”
Hodges has won three of his four professional fights, losing one by knockout to fellow rugby league hardnut Darcy Lussick in 2019.
He would be considered the favourite to win his bout with Hannant, if it goes ahead.
And if it doesn’t, Hodges is determined to get in the ring anyway.
He’s even prepared to fight Paul Gallen – his former State of Origin opponent who boasts a 12-2-1 professional boxing record, and has fought some of the best heavyweights in Australia.
Gallen lost to Kris Terzievski in his most recent fight in May, and is yet to lock in his next bout.
“George (Rose) might have to call Gal up. Gal’s always ready, so we’ll see what happens,” Hodges said.
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