Eight years, 50 kilometres and 24 professional fights separate Daniel Geale and Renold Quinlan.
The super middleweights live either side of Sydney and have contrasting motivation for seeking to claim the IBO world title relinquished by Victorian Zac Dunn.
Quinlan, 27, aims to step up from a successful amateur career followed by a pro record which has seen just one loss in 11 contests, and that was a controversial points decision to Victorian Jake Carr in 2003.
Geale, 35, wants to reboot after three of his last five fights resulted in high-profile losses in the US, seriously denting a pro career that had previously seen just one defeat in 26.
The Launceston-born veteran already has IBO, IBF and WBA world titles to his name, but all were achieved at middleweight (72.5kg).
Having been forced to drop weight even further to 71kg for the defeat to Miguel Cotto in New York in his last fight 16 months ago, Geale said it was an inevitable and sensible decision to move up to the 76.2kg super middleweight which he duly delivered at Thursday’s weigh-in.
Geale’s experience versus Quinlan’s youth will make a fascinating subplot, especially if the fight goes the full 12 rounds, as Geale’s traditionally do.
When the former Commonwealth Games champion won his first pro fight, against Danny Bellert in 2004, Quinlan was still at Sarah Redfern High School.
Geale won that night at the Southport Sharks AFL club with a knockout. Indeed, only one of his first 11 pro fights required judges to decide on.
In contrast, it has been 10 fights and six years since he last won inside the distance, with the losses against Cotto, Gennady Golovkin (both TKO) and Darren Barker (split decision) providing the unwanted red ‘L’s atop an otherwise impressive page of green ‘W’s.
An independent viewpoint was provided by IBO vice-president Steve Scott who described Quinlan’s record as “almost perfect” and Geale as “one of the best boxers Australia has ever produced”.