MANILA, Philippines – Taking a break from his training in Baguio City, pound-for-pound king and lawmaker Manny Pacquiao played basketball last Monday night.
The boxing superstar, who was with Team Pacquiao, outplayed the University of Baguio’s UB Cardinals at 86-78 in the first-ever Congressman Manny Pacquiao Cup.
Pacquiao was apparently energetic in the starting minutes of the game. However, as the game progressed in the first quarter, the Fighter of the Decade and his team died of enthusiasm against the UB Cardinals, 26-20.
Team Pacquiao also failed catching up in the second quarter, ending the first half with 50-43 in favor of UB Cardinals.
The table had spun in favor of Pacquiao's team in the third quarter, tying with the Baguio cagers at 66-all.
Pacquiao then helped bolster the team to victory in fulltime.
Baguio fans cheer
Pacquiao, who played with brother Bobby, apparently kept the crowd roaring.
Minutes before the actual game, fans who trooped to the Easter College Gym to see the basketball match were already cheering for the boxer.
Even members of the losing team said they were thrilled of Pacquiao's presence in the game. They said they weren't disappointed at all for the loss.
Pacquiao is still preparing for his welterweight clash against "Sugar" Shane Mosley this coming May.
The Filipino said his training camp has decided to include working the hoops in his training regimen to strengthen both his stamina and speed. – Report from Gladys Espinola, ABS-CBN News Baguio