Pacquiao returns to Manila and the real work of politics
With another world title won, Filipino boxer Manny Pacquiao touched down in Manila yesterday keen to get back to the real work of politics.
The 37-year-old senator claimed the WBO welterweight title with a unanimous points victory over American Jessie Vargas in Las Vegas on Saturday, his first bout since April.
“I went back after the fight because there is still work at the office and I’m excited to get back to work,” Pacquiao, wearing a flower garland, told reporters at the airport alongside Philippine National Police chief Ronald Dela Rosa.
“So boxing is done, set aside for now, and just focus on work.”
The southpaw, winner of world titles in eight different weight divisions and the first sitting senator to win a world boxing championship, has not ruled out fighting again.
The former congressman, who has a 59-62 win-loss-draw record, said after Saturday’s bout that he would like a rematch with retired American Floyd Mayweather Junior who beat him last year.
Meanwhile, New Zealander Joseph Parker will fight Mexican-American Andy Ruiz in Auckland next month for the World Boxing Organisation (WBO) heavyweight title vacated by Tyson Fury, Parker’s promoter said yesterday. After weeks of negotiation, Parker’s Duco Events said the fighters will meet at the city’s Vector Arena on December 10.
On the line is the WBO heavyweight belt, one of the two titles Fury vacated last month in order to seek medical treatment after admitting he took cocaine to treat depression.
Parker, 24, who has a 21-0 record with 18 knockouts, is now the WBO’s top-ranked heavyweight. Ruiz, 27, who is Mexican-born but based in the United States, has a 29-0 record with 19 knockouts.
Duco said it would be the first heavyweight title ever contested in New Zealand. “This is a huge sporting event which I expect to unite the country,” chief executive Martin Snedden said.
The WBO ranks Ruiz as its number three heavyweight behind former champion Wladimir Klitschko.
But the veteran Ukrainian is currently injured and concentrating on lining-up a bigmoney bout against Britain’s IBF champion Anthony Joshua early next year. Duco said that under the terms of the Auckland fight, the winner of Parker-Ruiz would have to fight the British former WBA champion David Haye early next year. —Agencies