MANILA, Philippines – Boxing promoter and adviser Rex “Wakee” Salud said it wouldn’t hurt Manny Pacquiao to go for a tune-up fight before asking for another bout against Juan Manuel Marquez.
In a conversation with Sunstar Cebu columnist John Pages, Salud said Pacquiao should better take an easy fight first, especially after his stunning defeat to Marquez last weekend.
“For me, it’s not wise to fight Marquez right away,” said Salud. “Don’t rush. Fight another opponent first. Have one tune-up fight. Then, observe.”
Marquez, who already figured in three close fights with Pacquiao, dropped the Filipino boxer with a big right hand in the sixth round. Pacquiao was knocked out cold, falling face down to the canvass.
Salud said a tune-up will greatly benefit the Filipino boxer. “This will give Manny confidence before facing Marquez in No. 5,” he said, adding that the boxer needs to put his 100% in training.
Salud feels Pacquiao was distracted by activities other than boxing and could not say no to his friends.
“His mind is into politics, is into religion, he’s accommodating too many friends—he has to focus,” he said.
But the Filipino’s boxing coach, Freddie Roach, disagreed, pointing out that a tune-up is no longer necessary at Pacquiao’s level.
“I don’t think that’s necessary at this stage. I don’t think he needs to fight a bum,” he told The Philippine Star.