• Jeff Horn and Manny Pacquiao's fight went the distance in Brisbane. (AAP)
Jeff Horn is exploring his options after Manny Pacquiao's decision to drop out of a rematch planned for November in Brisbane.
Source:
AAP
1 Sep - 6:12 PM 

Jeff Horn will search from "the top down" to fill the void left by Manny Pacquiao in his WBO welterweight title defence later this year in Brisbane.

Former belt holder Jessie Vargas shapes as the man most likely, after Pacquiao's withdrawal on Friday due to his commitments as a Philippines senator.

Horn's trainer Glenn Rushton said with the Australian's rise to world champion, he had become the hunted and would have no trouble luring a big-name fighter to Brisbane for a November title defence.

Rushton anticipates a new opponent being locked in within a week or so, with the venue dependent on the profile of Horn's rival.

"We want to bring a big fight to Brisbane this year," Rushton said on Friday.

"We're hoping to attract one of the other great fighters down here; Jeff's now the world champion, of course, so we have a lot more options than last time.

"We'll be starting from the top down - not the bottom up."

Horn said he would accept a challenge from former champion Vargas, who Pacquiao beat unanimously before losing to the Queenslander in July's famous upset.

"Vargas is a fight I'd definitely take," Horn said.

"He's a tough competitor, been world champion and held my belt just before Pacquiao ... I'd love to fight Vargus or (Miguel) Cotto.

"Cotto is a massive name; he's a great fighter."

The former schoolteacher also threw out a challenge to Floyd Mayweather, claiming it "would be an easier fight than a lot of other guys out there at the moment".

Rushton said Terence Crawford or Errol Spence Jr were unlikely to be available for the fight this year.

Six-time world champion Cotto is also unlikely to fight in Australia, given he is planning his farewell bout in December for New York's Madison Square Garden.

Horn's promoter Duco Events was told on Friday that Pacquiao would be part of a Filipino government delegation to visit China in the middle of his proposed preparation period for the fight.

The boxer-cum-senator has stated his intentions to return in 2018 for a rematch instead.

The Queensland government is willing to support a November Brisbane title defence regardless of the opponent.

Horn said it was frustrating that the Filipino's withdrawal had been dragged out for so long, but he was still keen on the proposed 2018 rematch.

"I want to beat Manny twice; no one's done that before and I want to be that guy," he said.