Stage fright may yet be an issue for Jeff Horn but it has not stopped the under-rated Australian boxer daring a "cocky" Manny Pacquiao to take him lightly in their July 2 world title fight in Brisbane.
Horn's WBO welterweight title shot at the legendary Pacquiao has finally been locked in for Suncorp Stadium after months of on-again, off-again talks.
The undefeated Horn, a 29-year-old former schoolteacher, admitted his head was spinning over the prospect of fighting in front of a capacity 52,500 crowd with a TV audience spanning 150 countries.
"Usually I am pretty good in front of crowds but this might be a bit different, I might have to see a packed Suncorp Stadium to believe it," he said.
"It gives me goose bumps just thinking about it."
But Horn (16-0-1 record, 11 knockouts) didn't waste time throwing down the gauntlet to eight division world champion Pacquiao (59-6-2, 38 knockouts).
Filipino veteran Pacquiao's camp were initially reluctant to fight the unheralded Horn, preferring to set up a mega-dollar deal with former champion Amir Khan in the Middle East which fell through.
The reigning WBO champ's camp said they now wanted to use the Horn bout as a quick kill to "say hi to the Australian fans and media" before heading off and preparing for another shot at Khan.
"Pacquiao and his managers sound a bit confident and cocky - it's great to hear," London Olympian Horn said on Sunday.
"It's like 'we will just take this fight, come to Brisbane, knock over Jeff Horn, make our millions and go do the Khan fight'.
"I know what it is like to underestimate an opponent. It's definitely the worst thing to do.
"If he does that to me he is definitely going to be the loser.
"I hope he keeps feeling that way."
Horn said he may not have the biggest profile outside Australia but believed that may all change after his fight against the 38-year-old Pacquiao, who juggles duties as a Filipino senator.
"Amir Khan is a big name even though he has been knocked out so many times," Horn said.
"But this is my chance to make a name for myself.
"I never thought Pacquiao would still be around when I got my world title shot.
"He is getting a bit older, I am still young.
"I am ready to take this shot and I am ready to take it off Pacquiao."
Horn never gave up on the dream fight despite the initial Khan announcement.
"It has been frustrating but I knew how big this fight would be if we actually landed it," he said.
"So I had to be patient, keep training and battling along so I could get that potential shot.
"The Middle East fight (against Khan) was heartbreaking at the time (it was mooted) but now it is finally here I am so excited."