Manny Pacquiao takes part in a training session in General Santos, Philippines. Jeoffrey Maitem / Getty Images
Manny Pacquiao takes part in a training session in General Santos, Philippines. Jeoffrey Maitem / Getty Images

Pacquaio will not retire if he loses next boxing fight



The boxing great Manny Pacquiao says he expects to defeat the American Brandon Rios in Macau later this month, but insists if he did lose he would not retire.

The 34-year-old Filipino, once regarded as the best pound-for-pound fighter of his generation, fights on November 24 in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory as he bids to break a losing streak and keep his boxing legacy intact.

“It’s one of the most important fights of my career because I want to show my fans and the world that I can still compete at a high level with elite boxers,” Pacquiao said.

A former champion in an unprecedented eight weight divisions, Pacquiao – who turns 35 in December – is seeking to come back from two consecutive defeats which has prompted speculation his best days are behind him.

His seven-year, 15-fight winning streak came to an end in June last year with a controversial split-decision loss to Timothy Bradley.

It was followed six months later by a sixth-round knockout defeat at the hands of his top rival, the Mexican Juan Manuel Marquez.

Pacquiao insisted the losses have not affected him psychologically, and said he did not contemplate being defeated by Rios. “I am expecting to win this fight,” he said of the World Boxing Organisation welterweight title bout.

“It’s a really important fight for me in my boxing career because I lost the last two,” he added, pledging an “aggressive” strategy.

The Philippines boxing hero-turned-congressman insisted he felt “no extra pressure following the two losses”.

“It doesn’t affect me. As far as boxing is concerned sometimes you win and sometimes you lose.”

Pacquiao’s sporting achievements have made him a national hero, turning him into one of the highest-paid sportsmen in the world, a show-business celebrity and, in 2010, a member of his country’s legislature.

He is now a second-term congressman with ambitions of eventually becoming president, and critics have questioned whether his diminishing prowess in the ring was because he had become distracted by his many other endeavours.

Family, friends and media commentators called on him to retire following his defeat to Marquez, whose hammer blow at the end of the sixth round sent the Filipino crashing to the canvas.

But Pacquiao, whose record stands at 54-5-2, with 38 knockouts, said he had the desire to continue, and losing to the 27-year-old Rios would not change that.

“I feel comfortable and confident about going on to win this fight,” he said. “I am not looking to retire if I lose this fight.

“My motivation is that boxing is in my blood. I enjoy it and I like to entertain my fans worldwide.”

The bout will be staged at Macau’s Venetian casino resort and is billed by promoters as “The Clash in Cotai”.

It will be Pacquiao’s first fight outside the United States since 2006.

It is due to take place on the Sunday morning, ensuring a prime-time Saturday night audience in the US.

The bio

Favourite food: Japanese

Favourite car: Lamborghini

Favourite hobby: Football

Favourite quote: If your dreams don’t scare you, they are not big enough

Favourite country: UAE

The specs

Engine: 1.8-litre 4-cyl turbo
Power: 190hp at 5,200rpm
Torque: 320Nm from 1,800-5,000rpm
Transmission: Seven-speed dual-clutch auto
Fuel consumption: 6.7L/100km
Price: From Dh111,195
On sale: Now

Sarfira

Director: Sudha Kongara Prasad

Starring: Akshay Kumar, Radhika Madan, Paresh Rawal

Rating: 2/5

CHINESE GRAND PRIX STARTING GRID

1st row 
Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari)
Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari)

2nd row 
Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes-GP)
Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes-GP)

3rd row 
Max Verstappen (Red Bull Racing)
Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull Racing)

4th row 
Nico Hulkenberg (Renault)
Sergio Perez (Force India)

5th row 
Carlos Sainz Jr (Renault)
Romain Grosjean (Haas)

6th row 
Kevin Magnussen (Haas)
Esteban Ocon (Force India)

7th row 
Fernando Alonso (McLaren)
Stoffel Vandoorne (McLaren)

8th row 
Brendon Hartley (Toro Rosso)
Sergey Sirotkin (Williams)

9th row 
Pierre Gasly (Toro Rosso)
Lance Stroll (Williams)

10th row 
Charles Leclerc (Sauber)
arcus Ericsson (Sauber)


Latest
Most Read
Top Videos