MANILA, Philippines – Mexican boxer Juan Manuel Marquez isn’t going for a fifth installment of his long standing rivalry with Manny Pacquiao, at least not right away.
According to his Mexican promoter, Fernando Beltran, Marquez’s next opponent will be chosen by his Mexican fans.
“What we have agreed is that he owes it to family and to himself and it will be what the Mexicans decide. It is not dependent on Pacquiao,” Beltran said in ESPN Deportes.
Marquez has decided to postpone his retirement after a month of contemplation following his sixth-round knockout victory over Pacquiao.
Top Rank CEO Bob Arum said the stunning outcome of the Pacquiao-Marquez fight last December calls for a fifth clash between the two ring warriors.
But Beltran doesn’t see that happening soon.
“Juanma plans a program in which surveys will be made so that the people can decide who will fight,” said the Mexican promoter.
Beltran’s statements runs contrast to his earlier comments on a possible fifth Pacquiao fight.
"Juan Manuel Marquez is a gentleman and we think Manny gave us the opportunity without needing to give us one and if we need to fight him, we will fight him," he was earlier quoted as saying.
Beltran, however, said Marquez's win over Pacquiao has given the Mexican boxer the power to choose any opponent that he wants.
"Juanma can fight in any part of the world… and we do not depend on Pacquiao or another boxer. What we depend on is good training and professionalism. We are going to fight against whom the people ask us for,” he said.
If fans want another Pacquiao rematch, by all means, Marquez will give it to them, said Beltran.
“If the people want it… we will give the opportunity to Manny. We are not closed to anything, it is not discarded, but in these moments it is necessary to see Juan Manuel like the key of the equation.”