MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) - Despite his shocking loss to American Timothy Bradley, Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao “has the true heart of a champion,” Malacanang and Vice President Jejomar Binay said in separate statements.
Binay said: “Manny fought hard and has shown he has the true heart of a champion.”
He added, “He remains a source of inspiration for the Filipino people.”
Judges scored the fight 113-115, 115-113 and 115-113 to award a split decision and the World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight crown to Bradley.
In a separate statement, Malacanang said the Filipino people will remain behind Pacquiao.
Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said: “Sa anumang larangan, may nagwawagi at may nagagapi. Ngunit gaya ng ilang ulit pinatunayan ng lahing Pilipino, ang bawat pagkadapa at pagkalugmok ay pagkakataon upang ipamalas ang kakayahan nating taas-noong bumangon. Basta’t patuloy tayong nagkakapit-bisig, tiyak tayong titindig tungo sa tagumpay, kung saan lahat ng Pilipino ay panalo.
She asked the Filipino people to pray for Pacquiao in order that he will regain his strength and stamina.
“Sa susunod mo pang mga laban at pagpupursigi, makakaasa kang lagi mo kaming kaisa at kasama,” she said.