Former WBA super middleweight titleholder Anthony Mundine has publicly declared his intention to return to rugby league after his bout against reigning WBA champion Mikkel Kessler at the Entertainment Centre in Sydney, NSW on May 11.
“I want to come back the same way I went out, being ‘The Man’” said the former St. George-Illawarra Dragons five-eighth. “So you can call it the resurrection of ‘The Man’. I’m back, baby.”
Mundine began his career at the Dragons in 1993 before spending a year with the Brisbane Bronco in 1997. He returned to St. George the following year and played in the 1999 grand final side that lost the premiership to the Melbourne Storm. Midway through the following season he quit rugby league to follow in the footsteps of his father as a professional prize fighter.
“I feel that I’ve got unfinished business in that area” said Mundine, who was known for his flashy and explosive style of play on the paddock.
While St. George-Illawarra is obviously the team that is closest to Mundine’s heart, there is no certainty that Mundine will come back to play for the Dragons. The second generation boxer says he is currently canvassing opportunities at various clubs within the National Rugby League.
“Right now I want to talk to a few clubs,” said Mundine. “To see where their vision is at, to see where their dedication is at and their desire to be the best.”
Ironically the same three questions could be asked of Mundine who, just over a month removed from the biggest fight of his life, is openly discussing a move back to the sport that made him a national identity in Australia.
Mundine won the vacant WBA title against American Antwun Echols in September 2003. After successfully defending his title against Japan’s Yoshinori Nishizawa, Mundine lost the title by split decision to Puerto Rican Manny Siaca in a lackluster fight that saw the Australian taste the canvas in the second round.
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