Manny Pacquiao
MP Promotions/Wendell Rupert
Battle-ready Pacquiao finally ditches gym work
Dino Maragay ( - July 19, 2019 - 4:49pm

LAS VEGAS — Manny Pacquiao on Thursday (Friday, Manila time) finally heeded his training team’s call and stayed away from the track oval and the gym to just rest.

Instead of running at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas track in the morning and working out at the nearby Bones Adams Gym, Pacquiao opted to just skip rope at his Skyloft Suite here at the MGM Grand. This was welcome news for his trainers, who, wary of a burnout, had been trying to hold him back in training.

The Filipino icon is all set for the official weigh-in Friday afternoon (Saturday morning, Manila time) for his mammoth showdown with fellow WBA welterweight champion Keith Thurman.

He spent the afternoon granting interviews to broadcast media, then hosted a Bible study in the evening.

The 40-year-old Pacquiao will try to unify his WBA “regular” welterweight title against the “super” championship of Thurman, a fighter 10 years his junior.

He and his team are confident that they’ve left no stone unturned during a rigorous two-month training camp. They are turning to speed, footwork and — perhaps the most significant of all — experience against the unbeaten Thurman.

“Thurman is ten years younger than Manny and Manny is the one who has been more active. This will be Manny’s third world title fight in 12 months! The pressure is all on Thurman to perform,” Freddie Roach said in a press release sent by longtime Pacquiao publicist Fred Sternburg.

“I think he will make a show of it early and come after Manny. That’s when reality will set in,” he added. 

Roach said Thurman has two choices against Pacquiao: run and survive, or engage and face his downfall.

“Does he run away from an old man like Adrien Broner, or get pushed around the ring by an old man, like Lucas Matthysse?” the bespectacled trainer said.

Pacquiao knocked Lucas Matthysse out last year in Kuala Lumpur — his first stoppage win in over a decade — then dominated Adrien Broner just this January. Matthysse chose to stay in front of Pacquiao while Broner tried hard not get knocked out.

The Filipino star, for his part, prefers that Thurman stays true to his word and trade blows with him right from the opening bell.

“If he goes toe-to-toe with me that will be lovely. It will make it a shorter fight,” said Pacquiao.

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