MANILA, Philippines – Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao gave trainer Freddie Roach an early birthday gift with a strong performance in training camp last Tuesday, one day before the Hall-of-Fame coach celebrated his 54th birthday.
“Birthday gift ko kay Freddi na maganda ang ensayo ko ngayon,” Pacquiao told Eddie Alinea of PhilBoxing after sparring six rounds with Lydell Rhodes.
Roach was full of praise for the former pound-for-pound king, telling Alinea that Pacquiao was “responding well to our program” in training camp.
“I’ve never seen him throw that many combinations since he walked into my gym and asked me to train him more than 10 years ago,” said Roach. “And to think, this is only our second week of sparring.”
“He’ll still improve when we get to Los Angeles, where he will meet three more of my guys to help him,” added Roach.
Pacquiao and his team will leave for Los Angeles on Saturday, and will hold the rest of his training camp at the Wild Card Gym there.
The team is brimming with confidence with still over a month to go before Pacquiao faces off against unbeaten American boxer Timothy Bradley Jr. in their April 12 rematch in Las Vegas.
“Everything that we expect Bradley to bring to the table, we will have an answer,” said Roach.
“We’re preparing him (Pacquiao) to put up an unrelenting attack from the opening bell until his hands are raised in victory,” the trainer added.
Alinea reported that Pacquiao will spar with Rhodes on Thursday and Saturday, and do roadwork on Friday along with 10 to 15 rounds on the mitts to wrap up the GenSan training camp.