MANILA, Philippines – Eight-division champion Manny Pacquiao already began his gym work on Saturday, more than 2 months away from his May 7 welterweight title clash against former world champion “Sugar” Shane Mosley.
Pacquiao, who started his stamina work last Thursday, visited the People’s Champ Gym in his hometown in General Santos City to pick up the tempo of his training.
Although his heavy training will actually begin on March 12 in Baguio City, the Filipino superstar said he wanted to cover the basics again.
“’Yun ‘yung ginagawa natin, basics sa training natin (We’re covering the basics of training),” said Pacquiao.
His Canadian adviser, Michael Koncz, said Pacquiao only wanted to make sure that his conditioning is already at an ideal level before he begins the heavy training.
“We’re not underestimating Mosley. He’s the most experienced fighter that Manny’s ever faced,” said Koncz.
After training in General Santos, the Filipino boxer flew to Manila on Saturday afternoon to attend the Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) awards night at the Manila Hotel.
Pacquiao, also hailed as the “Fighter of the Decade”, will be staking his World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight title when he faces Mosley in Las Vegas.
Most boxing observers see the 39-year-old Mosley at a gross disadvantage against Pacquiao because of age.
The Filipino champion, however, does not share this sentiment. He thinks Mosley still has enough gas left in his tank.
"Hindi natin puwede i-underestimate ang magaling na boksingero... Malakas din at champion din," he earlier said of Mosley. "Sa experience, talo tayo."
(We should not underestimate a great boxer. He’s strong and a champion. He has the advantage in experience.)
Aside from being an amateur standout, Mosley won several world titles in three weight classes.
The last title he held was the World Boxing Association (WBA) welterweight crown he won by beating Antonio Margarito.
He lost this belt after being defeated by Floyd Mayweather Jr. in May last year.
A Mayweather-Pacquiao bout is one of the most awaited among boxing enthusiasts. -- With a report from Anne Santos, ABS-CBN SOKSARGEN