Boxing: Manny Pacquiao not concerned with age, motivated to become a champion once again
ABS-CBN Sports on Jun 04, 2018 06:04 PM
(AP FILE PHOTO)
Just months shy of his 40th birthday, eight-division boxing world champion Manny Pacquiao is getting ready to fight for another world title.
It’s not really something that a lot of near-40-year olds do, but obviously, Manny isn’t an ordinary 40-year old.
And at this stage in his career, with really nothing left to prove, the boxer-slash-senator is again focused on bring home some gold around his waist.
On July 15th, Pacquiao challenges reigning WBA (Regular) Welterweight World Champion Lucas Mattyhsse at the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
And while Pacquiao is no longer the young buck that he used to be, the future boxing hall of famer isn’t concerned about his age at all.
“Hindi ko iniisip yung age ko o yung ano, basta ang motivation ko, gusto ko maging world champion ulit,” Pacquiao told ABS-CBN’s Dyan Castillejo.
At 35-years old, the champion Matthysse isn’t too far off in terms of age as well, but that doesn’t make the Argentinian knockout artist any less dangerous. In his 39 professional bouts, 36 have ended by KO or TKO, and it’s hard to imagine that if Mattyhsse lands clean, that he won’t be able to put Pacquiao away.
That’s why movement and timing will play a factor come fight night.
In the past week, Pacquiao has sparred 14 rounds with undefeated Australian George Kamobosos Jr. and Filipino junior middleweight Arnel Tinampay.
For head coach Buboy Fernandez, being able to read and anticipate Matthysse movements is a pivotal part of the Pacquiao gameplan.
“May mga suntok si Matthysse na hindi natin ine-expect, siya muna ang gagalaw tapos tayo sasagot,” said Fernandez.
Pacquiao’s long-time friend and trainer adds that they’re not going to be head-hunting during the bout.
“Hindi natin kailangan ng knockout. Kaiilangan ang impressive na panalo. Tulad ng sinabi ko, pag nakakita tayo ng butas, kukunin at kukunin natin.”
“Pinagtuunan namin ng pansin iyong jab ni manny Pag tinmaan ng jab, iiniit ang ulo ni Matthysse.” Trainer Nonoy Neri added.
While Manny isn’t thinking about his age too much, strength and conditioning coach Justin Fortune believes that they can at least get him feeling like the ‘old Manny’ against Matthysse.
“He’s getting better all the time, he is improving gradually…if we train properly and gradually, do a lot of base, he is quite capable of being the old Manny especially in front of Matthysse.”
H/T: Dyan Castillejo, ABS-CBN
Catch Fight of Champions: Pacquiao vs. Matthysse on Sunday, July 15th at 10:00 AM on ABS-CBN channel 2. You can catch the whole card LIVE on SkyCable Pay-Per-View. Check out http://www.mysky.com.ph/metromanila/promos/937/2018/06/01/fight-of-champions-pacquiao-vs-matthysse for more information!